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/A^ ^7^o A 




HARVARD COLLEGE 
LIBRARY 



qwamr; 




FROM THE FUND OF 

THOMAS WREN WARD 

Treasurer of Harvard College 
1830-1842 




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BAGHDAD 



DURING 



THE ABBASID (TALIPHATE 



LE STRANGE 



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HENRY FROWDB, M.A. 

PUBLISHER TO THB UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD 




LONDON, EDINBURGH, AND NEW YORK 



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^BAGHDAD,, 



DURING THE 



ABBASID CALIPHATE 



FROM 



CONTEMPORARY ARABIC AND 
PERSIAN SOURCES 



BY 

G. L_E STRANGE 

AUTHOR OF 'PALESTINE UNDER THE MOSLEMS,' 'CORRESPONDENCE 
OF PRINCESS LIEVEN AND EARL GREY,' ETC. 



WITH EIGHT PLANS 



" Ojrforb 
AT THE CLARENDON PRESS 



M DCCCC 



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( JAN 81 l l J01 



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M ' 1 1 



©jrfcrfr 

IRINTED AT THE CLARENDON PRESS 

BY HOKACE HART. M.A- 
TRINTER TO THR VNIVHRSITY 



MICROFILMED 
AT HARVARD 






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TO 

STANLEY LANE-POOLE 

IN REMEMBRANCE OF WORK DONE AND 

IN EXPECTATION OF WORK 

TO BE DONE 

THIS BOOK IS AFFECTIONATELY 
DEDICATED 



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PREFACE 

In the summer of the year 1883 it was my 
good fortune to make the acquaintance of the 
late Sir Henry Rawlinson, and the book which is 
now at length published is due to his suggestion. 
In the first place Sir Henry called my attention 
to the Ibn Serapion MS., of which the British 
Museum possesses an unique copy, and he urged 
on me the desirability, by its means, of working 
out the topography of mediaeval Baghdad ; assuring 
me that, with the numerous articles on this subject 
contained in the great Geographical Dictionary of 
Yakflt and other early authorities, a reconstruction 
of the old plan of the city was quite feasible. 
Ibn Serapion I published in the Journal of the 
Royal Asiatic Society (January, April, and October, 

1895). 

Other occupations hindered the conclusion of the 

present work; it took much longer than I had at 

first imagined to sift and set in order the mass 

of information scattered through the voluminous 

writings of the Arab geographers and historians; 



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viii Preface 

and even now a good deal might be added from 
incidental notices, other than those which I have 
found, in the later volumes of the Annals of Tabari, 
if the Index to that great chronicle had been 
available — but unfortunately this has not yet been 
published. 

There is indeed no lack of material, as will be 
seen by glancing over the names of contemporary 
Arab Geographers given in the accompanying 
Chronological Table (which the bibliographical 
List of Authorities completes) ; but the real basis 
of the present reconstruction of the mediaeval plan 
is the description of the Canals of Baghdad written 
by Ibn Serapion in about the year a.d. 900. By 
combining the network of the water system, as 
described by this writer, with the radiating high- 
roads, as described by his contemporary Ya'ktibt, 
it has been possible to plot out the various quarters 
of older Baghdad, filling in details from the accounts 
of other authorities, which, taken alone, would have 
proved too fragmentary to serve for any systematic 
reconstruction of the plan. 

As far as I am aware, no one has yet attempted 
to write a complete history and draw the plan of 
the great metropolis of the Abbasid Caliphs. A 
beginning was indeed made by the late A. von 
Kremer in his Kulturgeschichte des Orients unter 
den Chalifen (vol. ii. pp. 47-94) ; but unfortunately 
this went no further than a single chapter, giving 
an account (derived from Ya'ktibl) of the original 



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Preface ix 

burg, or Round City of MansAr, which was to later 
Baghdad much what the City of London has come 
to be in relation to greater London which now 
encompasses it for miles on every side. 

The bibliographical list of original Authorities 
and Editions, given at the head of this work, is as 
complete as I can make it, being more especially 
intended to serve for the references in the notes ; 
further, in the last three chapters some account 
will be found of these various authors and the 
nature of the description which each has left us of 
Baghdad. 

The system of transliteration adopted is that now 
commonly used ; but for the sake of brevity I have 
generally omitted the Arabic article, Al y before the 
names of the Caliphs, as also in many common 
place-names : and for so doing the sufficient authority 
of Silvestre de Sacy may be cited, who has followed 
this system in his Religion des Druzes (see vol. i. 
Introduction, p. v, note 2). It has the merit of 
brevity, and while rendering these names less uncouth 
to the English ear, makes them, I think, more easily 
distinguishable to the eye. 

In many plural names, such as Bazz&ztn, Tustarlyln, 
and the like, I have kept to the termination in tn 
of the objective case (instead of writing Bazzdzdn, 
Tustarlydn) to avoid a double transcription, since 
this iW-form properly occurs in the full name — e. g. 
Nahr-al-Bazz&ztn, the Canal of the Cloth-merchants ; 
Rabad-at-Tustarlyln, the suburb of the people of 



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x Preface 

Tustar; further, this is the post-classical form and 
the one now in use. It has not been thought 
necessary to mark dotted letters and long vowels 
in the names of authors cited in the notes. 

In mentioning dates, the years of the Hijrah are 
given, with the year a. d. following in brackets, 
which last is reckoned to be the year with which the 
major part of the Moslem year corresponds : thus 
a.h. 200 beginning on August n, a. d. 815, is given 
as equivalent to a. d. 816. 

The Map and Plans will serve to show what 
I conclude to be the disposition of the various 
quarters of the city as described in our authorities. 
Nobody can be better aware of the shortcomings 
of these Plans than I myself am," and they court 
criticism from any who will take the trouble of going 
through the evidence. The course of the Tigris 
has considerably changed during the last thousand 
years, of that there is ample proof, but it is not 
so easy to say where exactly, at any specified epoch, 
the bed of the river lay. 

For modern Baghdad and its environs I have 
followed the great plan of the city published by 
Commander Felix Jones in his Memoirs, Bombay 
Government Records, No. XLIII, New Series, 1857; 
while the surrounding country and the course of the 
Tigris generally are given from the Map of Ancient 
Babylon, in six sheets, compiled by Mr. Trelawney 
Saunders from the surveys of Felix Jones, Bew- 
sher, Collingwood, and Beaumont Selby, which was 



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Preface xi 

published by Stanford in 1885 on t ' ie sca ^ e °f 4,ooo 
yards to the inch. 

My plans of mediaeval Baghdad are, to a certain 
extent, tentative; in the main lines of roads, and 
the relative positions of the various quarters, how- 
ever, but little question is likely to arise, since 
the evidence is fairly complete. What is now more 
especially needed is excavation on the spot to show 
where, on the western side of the Tigris, the great 
Mosque of Mansfir stood, and on the eastern bank 
what was the exact position of the Rusifah Mosque. 
Both these buildings appear to have been standing 
in the middle of the fourteenth century of our era ; 
and, since tiles or kiln-burnt bricks were largely used 
in their construction, some considerable vestiges of 
their foundation-walls would certainly be found were 
the mounds of rubbish, on either bank of the Tigris 
above modern Baghdad, to be carefully examined. 

I have many to thank for aid in the carrying 
through of this work, and in the notes I have in 
all cases acknowledged more special obligations. 
For general bibliographical information, however, 
I may take this opportunity of expressing my thanks 
to both Professor Lane-Poole and to Mr. A. G. 
Ellis, Assistant-Keeper of Oriental Books and MSS. 
in the British Museum, and while recalling the names 
of Mr. A. A. Bevan and of Mr. E. G. Browne of 
Cambridge, who have always afforded me their 
friendly advice and assistance, I must not close 
my preface without recording how deeply I am 



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xii Preface 

indebted to Professor De Goeje of Leyden for his 
constant courtesy in answering many questions, 
and in affording me every kind of information, 
unstintedly, from his unrivalled knowledge of 
mediaeval Arab geography and history. 

G. LE STRANGE. 



Athenaeum Club, Pall Mall. 
August, 1900. 



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CONTENTS 



Bibliographical List of Authorities. . . pp. xxv-xxviii 
Chronological Table pp. xxix-xxxi 



CHAPTER I 

THE FOUNDATION OF BAGHDAD 

Previous capitals of Islam. Medina and Kufah. Damascus. 
The fall of the Omayyads. Need of a new capital for the 
Abbasid dynasty. The two Hashimtyahs. The Rawandf insur- 
rection. Courses followed by the Euphrates and Tigris during 
the Middle Ages. Mansur chooses the site of Baghdad. An 
Assyrian Baghdad; Etymology of the name. Az-Zawra and 
Ar-Rawha. The legend of the name Miklas; Suk Baghdad. 
The advantages of the situation of Baghdad . . . pp. I- 1 4 



CHAPTER II 

THE CITY OF MANSER 

The foundation of the Round City. Shf ah insurrection : delays. 
No traces of the Round City now extant. Plan marked out in 
cinders ; Abu ^lantfah. The Four Gates. Measurements. The 
Central Area, and the Palace of the Golden Gate. The Con- 
centric Walk. Bricks used. The origin of the Gates. Descrip- * 
tion of thoroughfare going from outer Gate to Central Area. 
The original Markets and Arcades. The Prison, and the Central 
Area. The Water-conduits pp. 1 5-29 



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xiv Contents 

CHAPTER III 

the city OF mansCr (continued) 

The Palace of the Golden Gate, and the Dtwans or Public 
Offices. The history of the Great Mosque of Mansur. Khalid 
the Barmecide and the Palace of the Chosroes. Sums spent. 
The Khuld Palace outside the Khurasan Gate. The foundation 
of Rusafah. Question how long the Round City remained 
standing : the siege in the reign of Amin. The Main Wall. 
Inundations destroy walls and houses .... pp. 30-46 

CHAPTER IV 

THE CANALS OF WESTERN BAGHDAD 

Ya kubt and Ibn Serapion. The older Dujayl Canal. The Nahr 
f tsa and the Sarat Canal. The Katrabbul and Baduraya districts. 
The Trench of Tahir. The Karkhaya Canal and its branches. 
The Canal of the Syrian Gate. The Batafiya and the channels 
of the Harbiyah Quarter. Comparative sizes of these various 
watercourses //. 47-56 

CHAPTER V 

THE KOFAH HIGHROAD AND THE KARKH SUBURB 

Square at Kufah Gate and various Fiefs. The Old Bridge and 
bifurcation of Muhawwal and Kufah Roads. Market of Abu-1- 
Ward : the Ibn Raghbin and Anbarite Mosques. Pool of ZalzaL 
The Old Hospital and buildings on the 'Amud. The Karkh 
Suburb and Gate. The story of the Greek Envoy. The Fief of 
Rabf . Warthal and Bayawar!. The Gate of the Coppersmiths ; 
the Square of Suwayd and the Tuesday Market . . pp. 57-68 

CHAPTER VI 

THE CANALS OF KARKH 

The Karkhaya and the Rufayl Canal. The 'fsa Canal and its 
Bridges. The Butchers* and the Poulterers* Markets. The 
Bazzizin and Dajaj Canals, with the Quarters of the Soap- 
boilers and others. The Fief and Canal of Dogs. The Shuni- 
siyah Cemetery and its shrines ; the Tuthah Suburb . . pp. 69-80 



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CHAPTER VII 

THE QUARTERS OF THE LOWER HARBOUR 

The Tabik and Kalliyin Canals. Chickpea Broth. The Monas- 
tery of the Virgins. The Street of Kiln-burnt Bricks and the 
Cotton House. The Melon House, or Fruit Market, and 
the Myrtle Wharf. The Lower Harbour. The Palace of isa 
and the Kasr 'ls& Quarter. The later Bridge of Boats. The 
Kurayyah Quarter. The Highroad of the Basrah Gate. The 
Sharkiyah Quarter and" the 'Atfkah. The Harrant Archway. 
The Palace and Fief of Waddah. The Booksellers' Market and 
the New Bridge pp. 81-93 



CHAPTER VIII 

THE QUARTER OF THE BASRAH GATE 

The Lower Bridge of Boats and the Barley Gate. The Palace of 
Humayd. The Kutuft& Quarter and the Palace of 'Adud-ad-Dfa. 
The Tustartyin. Later Basrah Gate Quarter. The Shrine of 
Ma'ruf Karkhi and the Old Monastery of the Sar&t Point The 
Convent of the Foxes. The Khuld Palace and the Karar. The 
Great 'Adudt Hospital. The Review Ground and the Stables of 
the Caliph pp. 94-106 



CHAPTER IX 

THE SHARl' QUARTER AND THE TRENCH OF TAHIR 

The Shari* Quarter and Fiefs. The Baghiyin and Burjulaniyah 
Suburbs. The Harbiyah Quarter and the Trench of Tahir. The 
Anbir Gate and Highroad : the Garden of Tahir. The Iron 
Gate. The Harb Gate. The Kafrabbul Gate. The Zubaydfyah 
Fief and its Mosque. The Straw Gate. The Zuhayriyah Suburb. 
The Blb-as-SaghJr. The Hanifah Suburb and the Palace of 
•Umirah. The Durta Monastery and the Dayr-al-Kib4b. The 
Jahirid Palace and its history pp. 107-iai 



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xvi Contents 

CHAPTER X 

THE HARBlYAH QUARTER 

Road to the Upper Bridge of Boats. The Canal of the Syrian 
Gate. The Slaves' House. The Harb Gate Road and the 
Suburb of Abu 'Awn. The later Harbtyah and its Mosque. 
The Quadrangles of Abu-l-'Abbas and Shabib. The Dujayl 
Road. The Persian Quarters of the Harbtyah. The Abna and 
the Dihkans. The Abu-1-Jawn Bridge and the Market of the 
Syrian Gate. The three Arcades near the highroad to the Upper 
Bridge of Boats. The Syrian Gate, the Prison, and the Ceme- 
tery. The Garden of Kass and the Anbar Gate Road. The 
Quarter of the Lion and the Ram. The Shrine of Ibralifm-al- 
Harbf. The Bukhariot Mosque and the Ramaliyah . //. 122-135 

CHAPTER XI 

THE QUARTERS OF THE MUHAWWAL GATE 

The Four Markets. The Nasrtyah Quarter. The 'Attabtyah 
Quarter; its watered silks and papermakers. The D&r-al-Kazz 
or the Silk House. The Upper Barley Gate. The 'AtMyah 
Suburb : the Kahtabah Road and Suburb. The Palace of *Abd- 
al-Wahhab and his Suburb. The 'Abbasiyah Island. The Patri- 
cian's Mill. The story of the Greek Patrician. The Muhawwal 
Road. The Fief of *lsa and the Muhawwal Gate. The Suburb 
of Hay Ian ah. The Suburb of Humayd, son of Kahtabah. Bridges 
of the Mills, of China, and of 'Abbas, leading to the 'Abbasiyah 
Island. The Bridge of the Greeks and the Fief of the Fan-ashes. 
The Old Tank. The Bridges on the Great Sarat and Karkhaya. 
The Kunasah and the Market for Beasts of Burden. The 
Yasiriyah Quarter pp. 136-152 

CHAPTER XII 

BARATHA, MUHAWWAL, AND THE KAZIMAYN 

Baratha and its Mosque : the Old Cemetery and the Gardens of 
Ka'yubah. The Dyers' Garden. The Muhawwal Township and 
the Palace of Mu'tasim. The Cemetery of the Martyrs and the 
Tomb of Ibn Hanbal. The Cemetery of the Kuraysh and of 
the Straw Gate. The Ka^imayn Shrines and the Buyid Tombs. 
Tombs of Zubaydah and the Caliph Amm. Tomb of 'Abd Allah 
Ibn ^anbal pp. 153-167 



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CHAPTER XIII 

EASTERN BAGHDAD IN GENERAL 

East and West Baghdad and Samarra. The three northern 
quarters of East Baghdad: Rusafah, Shammastyah, and Mu- 
kharrim. The Eastern Palaces and modern Baghdad. The second 
Siege : Musta'in and the walls on the western and eastern sides. 
Ya'kubi and Ibn Serapion : the highroads of the three northern 
Quarters. The Canals of the eastern side : from the river Khalis 
and from the Nahr Bin. The three Bridges of Boats. The Main 
Bridge. The Upper Bridge and Lower Bridge. The Zandaward 
Bridge. Executions on the Bridges. Upper Bridge dismantled. 
Later Bridge of the Palaces. Numbers of skiffs. Bridge of 
Kasr Sabur. The modern Bridge #.168-186 

CHAPTER XIV 

rusAfah 

The foundation of Rusafah. The Mosque and Palace of Mahdi. 
'Askar-Mahdi and the Causeway. The Shrine of Abu Hanifah. 
The Cemetery of Khayzuran. The Tombs of the Caliphs. Later 
history of the Mosque of Mahdi. The two highroads in Rusafah. 
The Straight Road and the Road of the Maydan. The Khuday- 
riyah Quarter and Market. The Upper Bridge of Boats . pp. 187-198 

CHAPTER XV 

THE SHAMMAslYAH .QUARTER 

The great Northern Road. The Road of the Bridge and Suk 
Yahya. The Road of the Mahdi Canal and SOk Ja far. Palaces 
of Ad-Dur. The Barmecide Fiefs. Suk Khalid and the Kasr- 
aJ-Tln. Dar Faraj. Dayr Darmalis and Dayr Samalu. The 
Shammasiyah Gate. Three Gates Quarter. Malikiyah Cemetery. 
The Shrine of Vows. The Palace of Munis. The Baradan Road 
and Bridge. Barmecide Houses and the Hufamiyah. Dar-ar- 
Rum : the Christian Quarter. The Dayr-ar-Rum or the Nestorian 
Monastery. The Jacobite Church. Other Christian Monasteries 
in West and East Baghdad. Christian Festivals in Baghdad. 
The Nestorian Missionary to China. The Market of Nasr and 
the Iron Gates. The Palace of Abu-n-Na?r near the Baradan 
Bridge pp. 199-216 



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xviii Contents 

CHAPTER XVI 

THE MUKHARRIM QUARTER 

The Khurasan Road and its Markets. The Bab-af-Tak Gate. 
The Musi Canal and the Mukharrim. The Zihir Garden, the 
Great Road, and the Street of 'Amr the Greek. The Palace of 
Mu tasim. The Long Street, the Palace of Ibn-al-Furit, and the 
Street of the Vine. The Suk-al-'Afsh or Thirst Market. The 
Market of Harashi and his Palace. The Ansir Bridge, the Palace 
of Ibn-al-Khasib, and the three Tanks. The Great Pitched Gate. 
The Mukharrim Gate and Road : the Canal to the Firdus Palace. 
The Haymarket. Palace of Princess Binujah. The Horse 
Market and its Gate. The Bab 'Ammar and the Palace of 
'Umirah. The two lower Canals at the Triple Divide. The 
Mu'alla Canal. The Bib Abrai and the Gate of the Tuesday 
Market. The Canal of the Palaces. The Bib 'Amman. The 
Mushjir Fief pp. 217-230 



CHAPTER XVII 

THE BUYID PALACES 

The Palace of Munis and the Buyid Palaces. The Dyke of 
Mu izz-ad-Dawlah and the Zihir Garden. The Dir-al-Mamlakat 
of Mu izz-ad-Dawlah. The great Dyke and the Kurij Canal. The 
Palaces of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah. His Garden and the New Canal. 
Elephants used in Baghdad. The Dir-as-Sal$anah of the Saljuks. 
Tughril Beg and his marriage ceremony. Demolition of this 
Palace by the Caliph Nisir. The Mosque of the Sultan pp. 231-241 



CHAPTER XVIII 

THE PALACES OF THE CALIPHS 

The Palaces of Western and of Eastern Baghdad. The Palace of 
Ja'far the Barmecide ; extended by Mamun. Hasan ibn Sahl and 
his daughter Burin. The Hasanf Palace restored to Mu'tamid. 
The Tij Palace begun : the Firdus Palace. The Palace of the 



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Contents xix 

Pleiades. The Great Mosque of the Palace. The completion 
of the Taj. The Shajibfyah Palace. The Dome of the Ass. 
The Wild Beast Park and other Palaces. The reception of the 
Greek Envoys from Constantine Porphyrogenitus. The Palace 
of the Tree. The Garden of Kahir. The Peacock Palace. The 
Hall of the Waxirs. The burning of the Taj Palace. Building 
of the second Taj. The Gardens of the Rakkahi . . pp. 242-262 



CHAPTER XIX 

THE PALACE GATES AND ADJOINING QUARTERS 

The Precincts, called the Hartm or Haramayn, and its Wall 
The Quarters of the Mualla Canal. The Town Wall Gates 
of the Palace. The B&b Gharabah and the B&b Suk-at-Tamr. 
The Needlemakers' Wharf: the Palace of the Cotton Market. 
The Palaces of the Princess, Dar Khatun and Dar-as-Sayyidah. 
The Mustansiriyah College. The Palace Mosque. The Badr 
Gate and Palace. The Elephant House. Market of the Per- 
fumers. Other Markets round the Square of the Mosque. The 
Rayhanlytn Palace. The Dargah-i-Khatun and the Libraries. 
The Nubian Gate and the Great Cross of the Crusaders. The 
Public Gate. Gates of the Palace Suburbs and the Garden 
Gate. The Gate of Degrees. General arrangement in the later 
Palaces pp. 263-278 



CHAPTER XX 

THE QUARTERS NORTH OF THE PALACES 

The wall of East Baghdad and its four Gates. The Bab-as- 
Suljan and the Sultan's Market. Streets of the Tuesday Market. 
Quarters built by Muktadf after the Inundation. The Road of the 
two Archways. The Street of the Canal. The Karah Ibn Razin 
and the Muktadtyah. Mukhtarah Quarter and the Bib Abraz. 
College of the Tajfyah and the Wardiyah Cemetery. The Bab 
?afar and the ^afarfyah Quarter. The Quarter of the Judge's 
Garden and other quarters called Karah . . pp. 279-289 

b 2 



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CHAPTER 3CXI 

THE QUARTERS EAST AND SOUTH OF THE PALACES 

The Mamunfyah Quarter. The Halbah Gate and its Inscription. 
The Persian Fief and the Burj-al-'Ajami. The Ka^fah Quarter 
and the Rayyan. The Bab Basalfyah or Gate of Kalwadha. 
The township of Kalwadha. Palace of the Kalwadha Rakkah. 
The Azaj Gate. Karah Juhayr, the Zandaward Monastery : the 
Maydan and Mas'udah Quarters. The eastern Kurayyah and 
the Nijamiyah College. The Bahafyah and the Tutushi Hospital. 
The later Tuesday Market . . . . . #.290-300 

CHAPTER XXII 

RECAPITULATION AND AUTHORITIES : EARLY PERIOD 

Five periods of Abbasid History. The First Period begins. 
Tabari and the first siege of Baghdad. Growth of Western and 
of Eastern Baghdad. Civil war between Amin and Mamun. 
Baghdad besieged by Tahir and Harthamah. Death of Amin ; 
Mamun in Baghdad. Mu'tasim removes to Samarra. The 
Second Period begins. The second siege of Baghdad under 
Musta'in. City walls built. Baghdad again the Capital. Ya'kubt 
and Ibn Serapion. The first systematic description of the city. 
Mas'udi and the history called The Golden Meadows . pp. 301-316 

CHAPTER XXIII 

RECAPITULATION AND AUTHORITIES : MIDDLE PERIOD 

The building of the Palaces in East Baghdad. The Third Period 
begins. The Buyid Supremacy : their Great Palace : the Dyke 
of Muizz-ad-^Dawlah and the Hospital of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah. 
Is^akhri and Ibn Hawkal. Mukaddasi. Decline of the Buyids. 
The Fourth Period begins. The Saljuks. The History of Baghdad 
by Khafib. Area of East and West Baghdad. New Baghdad 
and the Wall of Musta?hir: the Saljuk Mosque. The Sieges 
of Baghdad in the reigns of Mansur Rashid and of Muhammad 
Muktafl. Period of decay : the Persian poet Khakani. Benjamin 
of Tudela. Ibn Jubayr. Yakut. Many separate walled Quarters. 
The Mustansiriyah College and the Harba Bridge. Ibn Khallikan. 

PP- 317-339 



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Contents xxi 



CHAPTER XXIV 

RECAPITULATION AND AUTHORITIES : FINAL PERIOD 

The Fall of Baghdad : the Mongol invasion. Persian Histories : 
the Tabakat-i-Nasiri, Rashid-ad-Din, and Wassaf. Details of 
the Mongol siege. Death of the last Caliph Musta'sim. The 
Marasid-al-I#ila\ Summary of history of Baghdad since the 
Mongol siege. Ibn Ba(u(ah, the Berber. Hamd- Allah, the Persian. 
The tomb of 'Abd-al-Kadir of Gilan. Modern descriptions of 
Baghdad : Tavernier and Niebuhr. The so-called tomb of Zu- 
baydah. The Plan of mediaeval Baghdad and of the modern 
city. Excavations required to discover the sites of the three 
ancient mosques pp. 340-356 



Index pp. 357-381 



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LIST OF MAPS AND PLANS 



^No. I . . Map of Lower Mesopotamia during the Abbasid 
Caliphate; with Comparative Plan of Mediaeval 
and of Modern Baghdad .... To face p. i 
^ No. II . The Round City in the time of the Caliph Mansur ; 
with Enlarged Plan showing the Gates in the con- 
centric Walls To face p. 15 

-No. Ill . General Plan of Baghdad during the Earlier Period, 

between the years a.h. 150 and 300 . To face p. 47 
The Karkh Suburb, south of the Round City . To face p. 57 
The Harbiyah Suburb, north of the Round City ; with 
the three Northern Quarters of Eastern Baghdad, 
Rusafah, Shammasiyah, and Mukharrim To face p. 107 
The Suburbs of the Muhawwal Road . . To face p. 136 
General Plan of Baghdad during the Later Period, 

between the years A.H. 400 and 700 . To face p. 231 
Later East Baghdad To face p. 263 



-No. 


IV 


.No. 


V 


^No. 


VI , 


.No. 


VII 


- No. 


VIII 



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BIBLIOGRAPHICAL LIST OF 
AUTHORITIES QUOTED IN THE NOTES 

Abu-L-Faraj, Gregorius Bar Hebreus : History. Beyrout. 1890. 

Abu-l-FidA: Geography. Arabic text, edited by Reinaud and 
De Slane. Paris, 1840. 

Chronicle, edited by Reiske. 5 vols., Copenhagen, 1786. 

Abu-L-Ma^Asin : Annals, edited by JuynboU. 2 vols., Leyden, 1855. 

Abu ShAmah : Kitab-ar-Rawdatayn. Cairo edition, A. H. 1287 (1870). 

'ArIb : Tabari Continuatus : M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1897. 

BalAdhurI : Edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1886. 

Benjamin of Tudela: Itinerary, in Hebrew and English, by 
A. Asher. London and Berlin, 1840. 

Dozy, R. : Supplement aux Dictionnaires Arabes. 2 vols., Leyden, 
1881. 

Fakhri : History. Arabic text, edited by Ahlwardt Gotha, i860. 

Frankel, S. : Die Aramaischen Fremdwdrter im Arabischen. 
Leyden, 1886. 

Goldziher, I.: Muhammedanische Studien. 2 vols., Halle, 1889. 

GuzIdah : See next. 

Hamd-Allah: Tarfkh-i-Guzidah (History), in MS., quoted by 
sections and reigns of Caliphs. 



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xxvi Bibliographical List of Authorities 

Hamd-Allah : Nuzhat-al-Kulub (Geography). The section relating 
to Baghdad is printed by C. Schefer in his Suppiiment du Siasset 
Namek. Paris, 1897. The text of the entire Nuzhat has been 
lithographed at Bombay in A.H. 131 1 (1894). Excellent MSS. 
of both the Guzidah and the Nuzhat will be found in the British 
Museum Library and in the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. 

Hoffmann, G. : Ausziige aus Syrischen Akten Persischer Martyrer. 
Leipzig, 1880. 

Howorth, Sir H. : History of the Mongols. 4 vols., London, 1888. 

Ibn BatOtah : Travels, edited in Arabic with French translation 
by C. Defremery. 6 vols., Paris, 1877. 

■ J Ibn-al-FurAt: MS. in the Vatican Library, No. 726 Arab., and cf. 
*£ Cat Cod. Or. BibL Vat. edente Angelo Maio, Rome, 1831, p. 607. 

*'j Ibn Hawkal : Edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1873. 

Ibn Jubayr : Travels, edited by W. Wright. Leyden, 1852. 

Ibn KhallikAn : Biographical Dictionary, the Arabic text edited by 

v^ F. Wiistenfeld. Gdttingen, 1837. The biographies are given 

under consecutive numbers (the pagination not being continuous). 

A useful translation, in 4 vols., was made by De Slane for the 

Oriental Translation Fund and published in 187 1. 

Ibn Kutaybah : History, edited by F. Wiistenfeld. G6ttingen, 1850. 

Ibn Maskuwayh : Edited by M. J. De Goeje in Fragmenta His- 
toricorum Arabicorum. Leyden, 1871. 

Ibn Rustah : Edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1892. 

CSr Ibn Serapion : See Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society for 1895/ 
January, April, and October ; ' Description of Mesopotamia and 
Baghdad,' edited and translated by Guy le Strange. London, 
1895. 

Idrisi : Description d'Afrique et de TEspagne, R. Dozy et M. J. De 
Jong. Leyden, 1866. 

'ImAd-ad-DIn : Edited by M. T. Houtsma in Recueil des Textes 
relatifs & Wistoire des Se/Joucides, vol ii. Leyden, 1889. 

IstakhrI : Edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1870. 



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Bibliographical List of Authorities xxvii 

O JONES, Commander Felix : Report : Records of the Bombay 
Government, No. XLIII, New Series. Bombay, 1857. This 
Report includes a large plan of modern Baghdad and many 
maps of the surrounding country. 

KazwInI : Athar-al-Bilad, edited by F. Wustenfeld (vol. ii of the 
Cosmography). Gottingen, 1848. 

O Ker-Porter : Travels. 2 vols., London, 1821. 

KhAkAnI: Tuhfat-al-'Irakayn. Lucknow edition; lithographed in 
A.H. 1294 (1877). 

KhAtib : History of Baghdad. References are to the MS. in the 
British Museum, Or. 1507. Other MSS. of this important work 
— which has never been printed— will be found in both the British 
Museum and the French Bibliotheque Nationale. 

KitAb-al-AghAnI : In 20 vols. Cairo, A.H. 1285 (1868). 

KitAb-al-Fihrist : Edited by G. Fliigel. Leipzig, 187 1. 

KitAb-al-'UyOn : In Fragmenta HUtoricorum Arabicorum : M. J. 
De Goeje. Leyden, 1871. 

Kremer, A. von : Kulturgeschichte des Orients unter den Chalifen. 
2 vols., Vienna, 1875. 

±y MafAtih-al-'UlOm : Edited by Van Vloten. Leyden, 1895. 

MarA§id : The Epitome of Yakut's great Geographical Dictionary, 
called the Marasid-al-Ittite', edited by T. G. Juynboll. 6 vols., 
Leyden, 1852. 

Marco Polo : See Yule. 

Mas'OdI: The Golden Meadows, edited by Barbier de Meynard, 
with French translation. 9 vols., Paris, 1877. 

Tanbfh. Edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1894. 

>< M Award! : Edited by M. Enger. Bonn, 1853. 

Mirkhwand : Rawdat-as-Safa ; lithographed in 2 vols., folio. Bom- 
bay, A.H. 1266 (1850). 

V Mukaddasi: Edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1877. 

Mushtarik: See Yakut 
O Niebuhr, C. : Voyage en Arabie. Amsterdam, 1776 and 1786. A S • &}**. n , 

NuzHATTsee Hamd-AUah. 9 1 .' 



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xxviii Bibliographical List of Authorities 

C Parsons, A. : Travels. London, 1808. 

RAshid-ad-DIn : History of the Mongols. The first volume of the 
Persian text, with French translation, was published by E. Quatre- 
mere in 1836 ; it has never been completed. 

Rawlinson, Sir H. C. : The article on Baghdad in the ninth edition 
of the Encyclopaedia Britannica. 

Sharaf-ad-D1n : Histoire de Timur. Traduite par Petis de la Croix. 
4 vols., Paris, 1722. 

SharIshI : Commentary on Hariri. Cairo edition, a.h. 1300 (1883). 

SuyOtI : Lubb-al-Lubab, edited by P. J. Veth. Leyden, 1840. 

(J TabakAt-i-NA§ir1, by Minhaj-ad-Pin. The Persian text was printed 
at Calcutta in 1864, and an English translation has been published 
by Major H. G. Raverty in the Bibliotheca Indica, 1881. 

TabarI : Chronicle : published in three parts and in thirteen volumes, 
under the editorship of M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1890. 

TanbIh : See Masudi. 

L Tavernier, J. B. : Les six Voyages de. Utrecht, 1712. i2mo. 

Theophanes: Chronographia, edited by C. De Boor. 2 vols., 
Leipzig, 1883. 

Van Vloten, G. : Recherches sur la Domination Arabe sous le 
Khalifat des Omayades. Amsterdam, 1894. 

• ^ y L.' Wa§§Af: Edited in Persian, with German translation by Hammer- 
.^ 0* 1 PurgstalL Vienna, 1856, 

Ya'kCb! : Geography, edited by M. J. De Goeje. Leyden, 1892. 

History, edited by M. T. Houtsma. 2 vols., Leyden, 1883. 

YArOt : Geographical Dictionary, called the Mu jam-al-Buldan, 
edited by F. Wiistenfeld. 5 vols., Leipzig, 1866. 

Mushtarik, edited by the same. Gdttingen, 1846. 

Yule, CoL Henry : Cathay and the Way thither. Hakluyt Society 
Publications. 1866. 

The Travels of Marco Polo. 2nd edition. 2 vols., London, 1875. 

Z. D. M. G. : Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenlandischen Gesellschaft, 
vol. xxxix. Leipzig, 1885. 



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CHRONOLOGICAL TABLE 



Year. 


Abbasid 


Buildings and Events 


Contemporary 


A.H. (A.D.) 


Caliphs. 


in Baghdad. 


Authorities. 


132 (750) 


SAFFAg. 


Builds Hashimtyah. 




136(754) 


MansCr. 


(The First Period.) 
Foundation of Bagh- 
dad; the Round City. 




158(775) 


MahdI. 


Completion of Rusafah. 




169(785) 


Had!. 






170(786) 


HArOn-ar- 
RashId. 


Ja'far! Palace founded. 




193 (809) 


Am!n. 


First Siege, 197 (813). 




198(813) 


MamOn. 


Ja'fari Palace com- 
pleted, and called the 
Hasant. 




218(833) 


Mu'ta§im. 


Palace on Nahr Musa. 
(The Second Period.) 
Caliphate removed to 
Samarra, 221 (836). 




227 (842) 


WAthik. 


Samarra. 




232 (847) 


MUTAWAKKIL. 


Samarra. 




247 (861) 


Munta§ir. 


Samarra. 




248 (862) 


Musta'In. 


Returns to Baghdad. 
Second Siege, 251 

(865). 




251 (866) 


Mu'tazz. 


S&marr&. 




255 (869) 


MUHTADt. 


Samarra. 


- 


256 (870) 


Mu'tamid. 


Burin restores the 
Hasan? Palace. The 
Caliph returns to 
Baghdad, 279 (892). 


YakM. 



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XXX 



Chronological Table 



Year. 


Abbasid 


Buildings and Events 


Contemporary 


A.H. (A.D.) 


Caliphs. 


in Baghdad, 


Authorities. 


279 (892) 


Mu'tadid. 


The Caliph resides in 
East Baghdad. Pa- 
laces of the Thurayya 
and the Firdus built. 
The Taj Palace begun. 
The rjasani Palace 
enlarged. 




289 (902) 


'AlIMuktafI. 


The Taj Palace finished. 
Mosque of the Caliph 
built. 


Ibn Rust ah. 


295 (908) 


MUKTADIR. 


The Palace of the Tree 


Tabari, Ibn 






and others. The Greek 


Serapion. 






Embassy, 305 (917). 




320 (932) 


KAhir. 


The wall of the Round 
City falls to ruin. 




322 (934) 


RApl. 






329 (940) 


MUTTA£i. 


Palace of the Golden 
Gate ruined, 329 (94 1 ). 
The Round City inun- 
dated. 


Masudt. 


333 (944) 


MustakfI. 






334 (946) 


MUTt\ 


(The Third Period.) 
Buyids : Palace of 
Mu'izz - ad - Dawlah 
and his Dyke. The 
Peacock Palace, the 
Octagon and Square 
Palaces. 


Isfakhri. 


363 (974) 


Tai'. 


The 'Aduoli Hospital 


Ibn Hawkai % 
Mukaddasi. 


3** (990 


KAdir. 






422 (1031) 


KAim. 


(The Fourth Period.) 
Saljuks. TughrilBeg 
and Malik Shah. The 
Nizamiyah College. 
The inundation of 
466(1074). 


Khaftb. 


467 (1075) 


MUKTADt. 


The Mosque of the 
Sultan. Suburbs of 
the Muktadiyah, &c. 





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Chronological Table 



XXXI 



Year. 


Abbasid 


Buildings and Events 


Contemporary 


A. H. (A. D.) 


Caliphs. 


in Baghdad. 


Authorities. 


487 (IO94) 


MUSTAZHIR. 


Wall round lower East 
Baghdad, 488 (1095). 
The Rayhantyln Pa- 
lace. 




5I2(lIl8) 


MUSTARSHID. 


The Bab-al-Hujrah 
Palace. 




529("35) 


Man§Or 
RAshid. 


Third Siege, 530(1136). 




530(H36) 


Muhammad 


The Taj Palace burnt, 


Khdkdnt. 




MuktafI. 


549 (11 54), and in part 
rebuilt Fourth Siege, 
551 ("57)- Inunda- 
tion of 554 (1159). 




555("60) 


MUSTANJID. 


(The Fifth Period.) 


Benjamin of 
Tudela. 


566(II70) 


MUSTADl. 


City Wall restored, 
568 (1173). Inunda- 
tion of 569 (1174). 
Older Taj Palace de- 
molished. The second 
Taj and Dyke built. 




575("80) 


NAsir, 


Inundation of 614 


Ibnjubayr 






(1217). Talism Gate 


Ydkut. 






repaired, 618 (1221). 




622 (1225) 


Zahir. 


Restores the Bridge of 
Boats. 




623 (1226) 


MUSTANSIR. 


Mustansiriyah College. 
Mosque restored. 




640(1242) 


Musta'sim. 


Library of the Rayha- 
ntyin. Last Siege : 
Hulagu, 656 (1258). 


IbnKhallikdn. 



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BAGHDAD 
DURING THE CALIPHATE 

CHAPTER I 

THE FOUNDATION OF BAGHDAD 

Previous capitals of Islam. Medina and Kufah. Damascus. The 
fall of the Omayyads. Need of a new capital for the Abbasid dynasty. 
The two Hashimiyahs. The Rawandf insurrection. Courses followed 
by the Euphrates and Tigris during the Middle Ages. Man§ur chooses 
the site of Baghdad. An Assyrian Baghdad ; Etymology of the name. 
Az-Zawra and Ar-Rawfca. The legend of the name Miklis ; Sufc 
Baghdad. The advantages of the situation of Baghdad. 

The history of Baghdad, as a metropolis, coincides 
with the history of the rise and fall of the Abbasid 
Caliphs, for in the East it would appear to be almost 
a necessity of the case that every new dynasty 
should found a new capital. In the earlier annals 
of Islam the Era of the Flight (or Hijrah) com- 
memorates the date when the Prophet Muhammad, 
being forced to leave Mecca, went to take up his 
abode in the little hamlet of Yathrib. This change 
shifted the political centre of Arabia from the older 
commercial city to Yathrib, now to be named 
Medina, ' the City of the Prophet/ and which, from 
a small provincial town, suddenly rose to be the 
capital of Islam, becoming in a few years' time 
the seat of the theocratic government that had 

BAGHDAD B 



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2 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

imposed new laws on the desert tribes and trans- 
formed all Arabia into one nation. The first three 
successors (the Khaltfahs or Caliphs) of the Prophet, 
namely his companions Abu Bakr, 'Omar, and 'Oth- 
mfin, continued to govern Islam from Medina ; and 
among the secondary causes that brought about the 
fall of 'Alt, the next Caliph, is certainly to be 
counted his ill-advised abandonment of Medina 
and the Hijaz. In going to reside at Ktifah in 
Mesopotamia, 'All overset the balance of power 
among the Arab tribes, as established by his pre- 
decessors ; also he was unable to found a strong 
administration in his new capital, discovering when 
too late that at Ktifah the majority of the popula- 
tion was unreliable, ever rebellious and inimical to 
his theocratic claims. Mu'Awiyah, who now became 
the rival of 'Alt in the Caliphate, had more than 
a score of years before this period been named 
governor of Syria by the Caliph 'Omar; and, fore- 
seeing the struggle from the beginning, had made 
it his work to colonize Syria with relatives and 
dependants. The knife of a religious fanatic settled 
the question of who should be Caliph. 'Alt perished 
at Ktifah, inaugurating by his death the long line 
of Shfah martyrs, and Mu&wiyah, first Caliph of 
the house of Omayyah, ruled Islam unquestioned, 
residing at Damascus, which thus from the capital 
of a province suddenly became the metropolis of 
the Commander of the Faithful. 

Damascus was well situated to be the seat of 
government of the purely Arab "Caliphate of the 
Omayyads. It lay in a most fruitful land ; well 
within striking distance of the Hijfiz, where Medina 
and Mecca still remained the double centre of 



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i.] The Foundation of Baghdad 3 

religious power in Islam ; further it was backed by 
the Arabian Desert, from whence the Caliphs drew 
their soldiers, and where such of their kinsmen as 
still clung to the nomad life roamed at pleasure, 
but close at hand in case of need. Damascus was 
also conveniently near the Byzantine frontier, and 
during the ninety years of the Omayyad Caliphate 
the Arab armies ever and again poured from the 
north of Syria into Eastern Asia Minor, making 
almost continuous raids against the unfortunate 
Christian subjects of the Greek Emperor. Finally, 
that Damascus did not stand on a navigable river 
was of little disadvantage during the infancy of 
Moslem commerce, when all the carrying trade 
followed the old caravan-routes over the desert, 
and was of such small amount as could still be 
borne on the backs of camels. 

Of the many causes that led to the overthrow of 
the Omayyads, the two most potent factors would 
appear to have been the decay of the Arab tribal 
system on which the military power of the Damascus 
Caliphs depended, and the disaffection towards the 
government caused by the continued misrule of the 
New-Moslems, who were not Arabs — being mainly 
the subjects of the old Persian kingdom of the 
Chosroes — and who, both in numbers and in intel- 
lectual gifts, far surpassed their Bedawin conquerors. 
The Persians had accepted Islam cordially, but dis- 
tinctly after a fashion of their own, which the Arab 
party regarded as heterodox ; and the Abbasid 
claims to the Caliphate were made good, to no in- 
considerable extent, by trading on the inborn hatred 
which the Persians, already Shfahs, nourished against 
the Sunnl Caliphs at Damascus, who, though lax in 

b 2 



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4 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

morals and given to wine-bibbing, were orthodox in 
faith, and, before all things, Arab in sympathy 1 . 

The last Omayyad Caliph, Marw&n II, was routed 
and slain in the year 132 (a.d. 750), and the first 
Abbasid Caliph well merited his name of SaffAh — 
the ' Shedder of Blood ' — he having been constantly 
occupied, during the four years of his reign, in 
hunting down and putting to death every male 
descendant of the house of Omayyah, save one 
youth only who, escaping to Spain, ultimately 
obtained rule there, and founded the dynasty which 
afterwards came to be known as the Caliphate of 
Cordova. In 136 (a. d. 754) Manstir succeeded his 
brother Safifeh on the throne, and during the twenty- 
two years of his reign built Baghdad, and there 
organized the government of the Abbasids, which 
first established in power, and then suffering a long 
decay, was destined to last for five centuries seated 
on the banks of the Tigris. 

A new capital for the new dynasty was indeed 
an imperative need. Damascus, peopled by the 
dependants of the Omayyads, was out of the ques- 
tion ; on the one hand it was too far from Persia, 
whence the power of the Abbasids was chiefly 
derived; on the other hand it was dangerously 
near the Greek frontier, and from here, during 
the troublous reigns of the last Omayyads, hostile 
incursions on the part of the Christians had begun 
to avenge former defeats. It was also beginning 
to be evident that the conquests of Islam would, 

1 The causes which led to the overthrow of the Omayyads, and the 
revolution of which the house of * Abbas skilfully profited to obtain the 
Caliphate, are discussed in a recent pamphlet (named in the List of 
Authorities) by the Dutch orientalist, G. Van Vloten. 



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i.] The Foundation of Baghdad 5 

in the future, He to the eastward towards Central 
Asia, rather than to the westward at the further 
expense of the Byzantines. Damascus, on the high- 
land of Syria, lay, so to speak, dominating the 
Mediterranean and looking westward, but the new 
capital that was to supplant it must face east, be 
near Persia, and for the needs of commerce have 
water communication with the sea. Hence every- 
thing pointed to a site on either the Euphrates or 
the Tigris, and the Abbasids were not slow to make 
their choice. 

During the first Moslem conquest of Mesopotamia, 
two Arab cities had been founded there for the 
garrisoning of the troops — Basrah near the mouth 
of the twin rivers, and Ktifah on the Euphrates, 
where the desert caravan-road, from the Hij£z to 
Persia, entered the cultivated plain of Mesopotamia. 
The Caliph Saffeh, when not occupied in fighting 
and butchering, had lived at the Palace called 
Hfishimtyah (after the ancestor of his race), which 
he had built beside the old Persian city of Anb£r 
on the eastern side of the Euphrates, near to where 
the great canal, afterwards known as the Nahr'lsd, 
branched off towards the Tigris. At this H&shimiyah 
(of Anb&r) the first Abbasid Caliph died in 136 
(a.d. 754); and his brother Manstir, shortly after 
succeeding to the throne, began to build for him- 
self another residence called by the same name. 
This second H&shimtyah, according to one account, 
was a town standing between the Arab garrison-city 
of Ktifah and the old Persian town of Htrah ; that 
is to say, on the Arabian side of the Euphrates, not 
far above the place where that river, in the tenth 
century a. d., spread out and became lost in the 



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6 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Great Swamp. Another account places the later 
Hfishimlyah of Mansflr near the town (Madfnah) 
of Ibn Hubayrah, which last lay close by Kttfah, 
and therefore must not be confounded with the 
Castle (Kasr) of Ibn Hubayrah, a town of some 
importance lying higher up the Euphrates than 
Ktifah, and on its left or eastern bank 1 . 

The exact position, however, of this town of 
H&shimlyah is of little importance, since Manstir 
very soon abandoned the site as most inconvenient 
for a capital. It was too near Ktifah, with its popu- 
lation of fanatical Shfahs, and its garrison of Arab 
tribesmen, who constantly rioted and otherwise 
gave trouble. Lastly, Manstir took a permanent 
dislike to H&shimlyah after the insurrection of the 
Rlwandls, when a multitude of these Persian 
fanatics surging round his palace had insisted on 
worshipping him as the Deity. The indignant 
Caliph had repudiated their idolatrous homage, 
whereupon they began a riot, attacking the guards, 
and Manstir at last found himself in some danger 
of losing his life at the hands of those who had 
pretended to revere him as their God. 

If the capital of Islam was to be shifted to 

1 Ya'kubi, 237 ; Tabari, iii. 271. This duplication of place-names, 
in the immediate neighbourhood one of the other, is one of the 
difficulties of mediaeval Arab geography. Dictionaries of homonyms 
exist— as, for instance, that of Yakut called A/-AfusAtari&—and they 
are useful, though seldom affording sufficient information about places 
of minor importance. That there was a Hashimfyah at Anbar, as 
well as at Kufah, is evident by the comparison of two such good 
authorities as the Kit&b-al- Uy&n, pp. 211, 214, 236, with the passages 
in Tabari and Ya'kubi cited above. It is also evident from the passage 
in Tabari that the Madinah, or 'town,' of Ibn Hubayrah close to 
Kufah, was not identical with his Kasr, or ' Castle/ a place which, 
however, afterwards rose to be a town of some importance standing 
on the high road from Baghdad to Kufah. 



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i.] The Foundation of Baghdad 7 

Mesopotamia, the advantages of a site on the 
Tigris, rather than on the Euphrates, were con- 
spicuous. The new capital would then stand in 
the centre of a fruitful country, and not on the 
desert border, as was the case with Ktifah and 
the neighbouring towns, for the barren sands of 
Arabia come right up to the western bank of the 
Euphrates. By a system of canals the waters of 
this latter river were used to thoroughly irrigate 
and fertilize all the country lying in between the 
two great streams, while the waters of the Tigris 
were kept in reserve for the lands on its left or 
Persian bank ; and thus the whole breadth of the 
province, from the Arabian Desert on the one side 
to the mountains of KurdistAn on the other, was to 
be brought under cultivation, and converted into 
a veritable garden of plenty. Lastly^ the Lower 
Tigris before its junction with the Euphrates was 
more practicable for navigation than this latter 
river, inasmuch as the great irrigation canals, by 
effecting the drainage of the surplus waters of the 
Euphrates into the Tigris, scoured the lower course 
of this river, and kept the water-way clear through 
the dangerous shallows of the Great Swamp imme- 
diately above the Basrah Estuary. 

To understand the problem as presented to 
Man§flr in his search after a suitable place for the 
new capital, it must also be borne in mind that 
during the period of the Abbasids, neither the 
Euphrates nor the Tigris followed the course 
marked on our modern maps. From the account 
given by Ibn Serapion, it is evident that the main 
stream of the Euphrates, at a short distance above 
the ruins of Babylon, took the right or western 



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8 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

channel, and, very soon after passing Kttfah, dis- 
charged its waters into the Great Swamp, which 
is so important a feature in the political and 
physical geography of that day. The Tigris, on 
the other hand, when it reached the latitude of 
the present Ktit-al- Amfirah (about a hundred miles 
as the crow flies below Baghdad) turned due south, 
and passing down to Wfisif by the channel now 
known as the Shatt-al-Hayy, shortly below this city, 
also entered the Great Swamp where, however, 
unlike the Euphrates, its course continued to be 
marked by a series of navigable lagoons, called 
Hawr. Finally the whole body of water collected 
in the Swamp, from both the great rivers, drained 
into a channel leading out immediately to the head 
of the tidal estuary, which, after passing Basrah, 
flowed into the Persian Gulf at'Abbad&n 1 . 

1 At the present day the Tigris, below Kut-al-'Amarah, instead of 
flowing down past Wasit, turns into the more easterly channel, and 
after making a great bend due east, takes its course south to Kurnah, 
where it joins the waters of the Euphrates to form the estuary of the 
Shatt-al-'Arab. It is still a question when this change of bed took 
place, for no direct evidence of the date is to hand ; but the change 
doubtless was effected gradually, and probably during the course of 
the sixteenth century A.D. The western bed, going through Wasit, 
certainly continued to be full of water as late as the middle of the 
fifteenth century A. D. It is plainly thus described by all our Arabic 
and Persian authorities of the Middle Ages, to mention only the latest 
in date, by Hamd Allah Mastawfi in A. D. 1330, by 'Alt Yazdi, the 
historian of the campaigns of Timur, who took Wasif, ' on the Tigris,' 
in A. D. 1393, and by Hafiz Abru, who wrote about the year A. D. 1420. 
After this must have come the change, and our next authority, more 
than two centuries, however, later, is the Frenchman Tavernier. 
After visiting Baghdad in February, 1652, he describes his journey 
down the Tigris, which (he says) some distance below the city, divided 
into two branches, so as to enclose a great island that was traversed 
by numerous small canals. The western channel (the older course by 
Wasit) apparently was then already no longer navigable, and Tavernier 
did not travel by it, but describes the river here as running ' vers la 



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i.] The Foundation of Baghdad 9 

Manstir made many journeys in search of a site 
for his new capital, travelling slowly up the banks 
of the Tigris from Jarjarfiyi to Mosul. A site near 
B&rimm& below Mosul was at first proposed, where 
the hills called Jabal Hamrln are cut through by 
the Tigris, but the Caliph finally decided against 
this, it is said because of the dearness and the 
scarcity of provisions. The Persian hamlet of 
Baghdad, on the western bank of the Tigris, and 
just above where the $ardt canal flowed in, was 
ultimately fixed upon, and in the year 145 (a.d. 762) 
Mansfir began to lay the foundations of his new city. 

From the discovery made by Sir Henry Raw- 
linson in 1848, during the low water in an unusually 
dry season, of an extensive facing in Babylonian 
brickwork, which still lines the western bank of the 
Tigris at Baghdad, it would appear certain that 
this place had already been occupied by a far more 
ancient city. The bricks are each stamped with the 
name and titles of Nebuchadnezzar, and it has since 
been found that in the Assyrian geographical cata- 
logues of the reign of Sardanapalus a name very 

pointc de la M&opotamie.' The French traveller went by boat down 
the eastern (the present) channel, which took its course ' le long de 
Tancienne Chaldee.' He was ten days going from Baghdad to Basrah, 
and after passing (KQf-al-) 'Amarat, a clay-built fort, he mentions the 
villages of Satarat, Mansuri, Magar, and Gazar, when he reached 
Gorno (Kurnah) 'where the Euphrates and Tigris come together.' 
(Tavernier, i. 240.) It is evident, therefore, that the Tigris has followed 
its present course from gu{-al-'Amarah to Kurnah since the middle of 
the seventeenth century, some time before which, but after 1420, it 
began to change over from the Wasi{ channel that it had occupied 
during the Middle Ages. It is curious further to notice that this 
present eastern course, running from 'Amarah to Kurnah, is also the 
channel taken by the Tigris in pre- Islamic days, namely during 
the Sassanian period ; as has been already pointed out in a note to 
my translation of Ibn Serapion (J.R.A.S., 1895, p. 301). 



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io Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

like Baghdad occurs, which probably refers to the 
town then standing on the site afterwards occupied 
by the capital of the Caliphs. 

Be this as it may, the name of Baghdad in its more 
modern form is presumably Persian, for which Y&ktit 
and other Arab authorities give various fanciful 
etymologies. B&gh in Persian means * garden,' and 
the city, they say, had the name of the garden of a 
certain Dad or D&dwayh ; or else Bagh was the name 
of an idol, and dad, meaning 'given' or ' gift/the name 
of the town would thus have signified c the gift of 
the idol Bagh' — for the which reason, some pious 
Moslems add, its name was changed by the Caliph 
Manstir to Madlnat-as-Sal&m, ' the City of Peace.' 
This last was more especially the official name for 
the capital of the Caliphate, and as such Madlnat- 
as-Sal&m appears as a mint-city on the coins of the 
Abbasids. In common parlance, however, the older 
name, Baghdad, maintained its supremacy, and the 
geographical dictionaries mention several variations 
in the spelling, doubtless Persian or archaic forms, 
viz. Baghdddh and Baghd&n, also Maghd&d, Magh- 
d&dh, and Maghd&n. From an elegy quoted by 
Tabarl on the ruin which Baghdad had suffered 
during the great siege in the reign of the Caliph 
Amln, it would seem that the pronunciation Bagh- 
d&dh was then held to represent what had been the 
name of this town in the Persian or infidel days, as 
against Baghdad of the Moslems. The poem in 
question closes with these two lines : — 

' And, in this present state of affairs, it will be well indeed, 
If (Moslem) Baghdad do not shortly relapse and again become 
(Infidel) Baghdadh ! ' 

The true etymology, however, of the name would 



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i.] The Foundation of Baghdad n 

appear to be from the two ancient Persian words 
Bagh, ' God/ and Dddh, meaning * founded ' or 
'foundation' — whence Baghdad would have signified 
the city ' Founded by God/ 

The western half of Baghdad in Moslem days 
was also known by the name of Az-Zawr&, meaning 
' the Bent ' or ' the Crooked/ in allusion, it is said, 
to the Kiblah-point (or direction towards Mecca) not 
precisely coinciding here with any one of the cardinal 
points of the compass. Another explanation given 
is that Baghdad took the name Az-Zawr& from the 
river Tigris, which was ' bent ' as it passed by 
the city : while Eastern Baghdad is said to have 
received the name of Ar-RawhA, 'the Widespreading/ 
or ' the Shallow/ from its position in a curve of the 
stream; and Mas'tidl in mentioning these names 
adds that both Az-Zawr£ and Ar-Rawhd were in 
common use among the people in his day. It is to 
be remarked that the grammatical form of both 
these names is Arabic, but the explanation given 
for the use of the terms is in neither case very 
plausible ; it is therefore noteworthy that Hamd- 
Allah the Persian geographer, writing in the eighth 
century (a. d. the fourteenth), states that while the 
Arabs always spoke of Baghdad as Madlnat-as- 
SalAm, 'the City of Peace/ it was in preference 
named ZawrA by the Persians, which almost looks 
as though this Arabic word Zawrd, ' Crooked/ may 
have stood for some more ancient Iranian name, 
now long forgotten 1 . 

1 Tanbih, 360; Nuzhat, 146 ; Tabari, iii. 273 ; Yakut, i. 677> &7& 5 
Rawlinson, Encycl. Brit., &v. Baghdad. The verse quoted will be 
found in Tabari, iii. 872; and this reference I owe to Professor 
A. A. Bevan. 



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12 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

During the last period of the Sassanian dynasty, 
Persian Baghdad, on the western side of the Tigris, 
had been a thriving place, and at the period of the 
Moslem Conquest a monthly market was held here. 
It became famous in the early annals of Islam for 
the very successful raid of which it was the scene. 
During the Caliphate of Abu Bakr, Kh&lid the 
general of the Arab army, after advancing some 
way into Mesopotamia, suddenly dispatched a body 
of troops against this Stik Baghdad, as the * Market ' 
held at the Sardt Point was then called ; the raiders 
surprised the town 'and the Moslems filled their 
hands with gold and silver, obtaining also the where- 
widial to carry away their booty,' for they promptly 
returned again to Anb&r on the Euphrates, where 
Khilid lay encamped. 

After this incident of the year 13 (a.d. 634) 
Baghdad appears no more in history until Manstir, 
seeking out a site for the new capital, encamped 
here in the year 145 (a.d. 762). We are told that 
the spot was then occupied by several monasteries 
{Dayr\ chiefly of Nestorian monks, and from them 
Manstir learned that among all the Tigris lands this 
district especially was celebrated for its freedom 
from the plague of mosquitoes, the nights here being 
cool and pleasant even in the height of summer. 
These lesser advantages, doubtless, had no incon- 
siderable influence with Mansflr in the final choice 
of this as the place for the new capital of the 
Abbasids in Mesopotamia ; but the practical fore- 
sight shown by the Caliph has been amply confirmed 
by the subsequent history of Baghdad. This city, 
called into existence as by an enchanter's wand, was 
second only to Constantinople in size during the 



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i.] The Foundation of Baghdad 13 

Middle Ages, and was unrivalled for splendour 
throughout Western Asia, becoming at once, and 
remaining for all subsequent centuries, the capital 
of Mesopotamia. Wars, sieges, the removal for a 
time by the Caliphs of the seat of government to 
S&marri 1 (higher up the Tigris), even the almost 
entire destruction of the city by the Mongols in 
a.d. 1258, none of these have permanently affected 
the supremacy of Baghdad as capital of the Tigris 
and Euphrates country, and now, after the lapse 
of over eleven centuries, the Turkish governor of 
Mesopotamia still resides in the city founded by the 
Caliph Mansflr. 

It is related by the historian Tabarl that a pro- 
phecy was found in the ancient books of the 
Christian monks, foretelling of a great city to be 
built in course of time between the §arit Canal 
and the Tigris, by one bearing the name of Miklis. 
The Caliph Manstir hearing of this prophecy greatly 
encouraged his people by telling them that this 
very name had been given him as a boy by his 
nurse. The real Miklds had been a celebrated 
robber of that day, and the young prince had 
earned this nickname for himself by stealing on one 

1 This city had already been a flourishing place under the Sassanian 
kings, and in Aramaean or Syriac the name was written Samarra. It 
became the capital of the Abbasids under Mutasim, and from the 
year 221 to 279 (a. d. 836 to 892) seven Caliphs resided here, the name 
of the place being then (officially) changed to Surra- man -raa, meaning 
* Who sees it, rejoices/ Under this form the name appears as a mint- 
city on the coins of the Abbasids, beginning with the Caliph Mutasim. 
Six ways of pronouncing the name are cited by Ibn Khallikan, and 
Yakut quotes a variety of fanciful etymologies, giving, however, the 
pronunciation Samarra at the head of the article in his Geographical 
Dictionary. In Tabari, and the earlier authorities, the name is always 
spelt Surra-man-raa, but this form appears only to have been used 
officially. Yakut, iii. 14 ; Hoffmann, 188 ; Ibn Khallikan, No, 8, p. 15. 



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14 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

occasion his nurse s distaff and selling the thread 
from it to provide a banquet, all his companions 
having been invited to do honour to the collation. 

The manifold advantages of the position of 
Baghdad are 3 theme on which Moslem geogra- 
phers and historians fondly expatiate. Mukaddasi, 
for instance, states that the Caliph took the advice 
of those who had had experience from living here 
both in summer and in winter, and all agreed in 
its praise, that geographer summing up in the 
following terms said to have been addressed to 
Manstir: 'We are of opinion that thou shouldst 
found the city here between the four districts of 
Bflk and Kalwddhi, on the eastern bank, and 
of Kafrabbul and B&dur&y&, on the western bank : 
thereby shalt thou live among palms and near 
water, so that if one district fail thee in its crops 
or be late in its harvest, in another will the remedy 
be found. Also thy city being on the Sarit Canal, 
provisions will be brought thither by the boats of 
the Euphrates, and by the caravans through the 
plains, even from Egypt and Syria. Hither, up 
from the sea, will come the wares of China, while 
down the Tigris from Mosul will be brought goods 
from the Byzantine lands. Thus shall thy city be 
safe standing between all these streams, and thine 
enemy shall not reach thee, except it be by a boat 
or by a bridge, and across the Tigris or the 
Euphrates 1 / 

1 Baladhuri, 246; Tabari, Hi. 274, 276; Mukaddasi, 119. The 
Miklas story is also given, with amplifications, in Yakut, i. 68; and 
another summary of the advantages of the site will be found in 
Tabari, iii. 275, the speech in this account being put in the mouth 
of the §afeib, or Lord of the District, of Baghdad. 



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CHAPTER II 

THE CITY OF MAN§0r 

The foundation of the Round City. Shf ah insurrection : delays. 
No traces of the Round City now extant Plan marked out in cinders ; 
Abu Hanffah. The Four Gates. Measurements. The Central Area, 
and the Palace of the Golden Gate. The Concentric Walls. Bricks 
used. The origin of the Gates. Description of thoroughfare going 
from outer Gate to Central Area. The original Markets and Arcades. 
The Prison, and the Central Area. The Water-conduits. 

The Round City in Western Baghdad which, as 
already said, was founded by Mansflr in the year 
145 (a. d. 762), formed the nucleus of the great 
metropolis which afterwards, radiating from this 
centre, spread itself over both banks of the Tigris. 
This burgh, generally referred to as Madlnat-al- 
Manstir or the City of Manstir, was built with a 
double wall and four gates, it was exactly circular 
in outline, and stood -close to the right bank of the 
river, at the angle formed by the inflowing of the 
Sarit Canal. Hardly, however, had Mansftr begun 
to lay out the plan of his new city, when the work 
was stopped by reason of a Shf ah rebellion in the 
Hijdz. A certain Muhammad, grandson of the 
Caliph Hasan, son of 'All, rose in arms, at Medina, 
asserting the rights of his house to the Caliphate. 
He was before long defeated and slain by Humayd 



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16 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

ibn Kahtabah and c ls£ ibn MflsA, a nephew of 
Manstir, who had been sent against him with an 
army. Then his brother Ibrahim once more raised 
the standard of the Alids in Basrah, and imme- 
diately marched on Ktifah, where *fs£, the nephew 
of the Caliph, opposing him with his victorious 
troops from the Hij&z, this Ibrahim, too, was ulti- 
mately slain. Manstir, who had himself meanwhile 
crossed Mesopotamia to Ktifah, and superintended 
the dispatch of the troops, now returned to Baghdad, 
where his nephew 'tsd and Humayd, the son of 
Kahtabah, now joining him, they were both re- 
warded by a grant of fiefs in the new city as will 
be more particularly described in a later chapter. 

It was, however, not until the year 146 (a.d. 763) 
that the buildings at Baghdad were sufficiently 
advanced to enable the Caliph to remove the 
Treasury and Public Offices (Dlw&ns) from Kftfah, 
where they had been temporarily established, to 
his new capital. No further mishap occurring, the 
constructions were now rapidly pushed on, 100,000 
craftsmen being constantly employed on the works, 
and by the year 149 (a.d. 766) the new burgh, the 
Round City of Mansftr, was finished l . 

Of this Round City, apparently, no traces now 
exist ; but the reason is not far to seek when it is 
remembered that the country where Baghdad stands 
being entirely wanting in stone quarries, the walls 
and houses were for the most part constructed of 

1 Ibn Kutaybah, 192. The following description of the Round City 
is derived mainly from Ya'kubi, who wrote about 130 years after the 
date of its foundation and when most of it was still standing. The 
historian Tabari, who wrote some twenty yeazs after Ya'kubi, has 
given a detailed account in his Annals of the circumstances connected 
with the foundation of Baghdad. 



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ii.] The City of Mansur 17 

those sun-dried mud bricks, which, with the lapse 
of centuries, are inevitably converted back into the 
clay from which they were originally moulded. 
Kiln-burnt bricks and tiles were indeed used to 
some extent, especially for facing the buildings, and 
fragments of these might still be found, marking 
the sites of ancient mosques and palaces, if suitable 
excavations could be made. 

It is said that Mansfir caused workmen to be 
brought together from Syria and Mosul, from Persia 
and from Babylonia, as also architects and land- 
surveyors; and over the craftsmen he appointed 
four chief overseers, one of these being the Imim 
Abu Hanlfah, well known as the founder of the 
tlanifites, the earliest of the four schools of orthodox 
Sunnl theology. He is said to have been the first 
Moslem to discard the older method of counting the 
bricks prepared for building, and in its stead he 
measured the stacks with a graduated rod and then 
computed their number. The plan of the city was 
first traced out on the ground with lines of cinders, 
and, to mark it the better, all along the outline 
they set balls of cotton saturated with naphtha and 
then set these on fire. On the lines thus marked 
were dug the foundations of the double walls, with 
a deep ditch outside, filled with water, and a third 
Innermost wall round the central area, the whole 
thus forming concentric circles, four equidistant gate- 
ways being left in each of the circuits of the walls. 
Of these gates two, the Ktifah Gate (SW.) and the 
Ba§rah Gate (SE.), both opened on the $ar&t 
Canal; the Khurfis&n Gate (NE.) was on the 
Tigris, leading to the Main Bridge of Boats, while 
the Syrian Gate (NW.) led to the highroad of 



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18 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Anb&r, which came down along the northern or left 
bank of the upper §ar£t Canal. As the Moslem 
writers remark, the main feature of the City of 
Mansflr was that it was circular, with four equi- 
distant gates, and this was a novelty in Islam, 
probably derived from Persia, Externally from gate 
to gate measured 5,000 ells, or about 2,500 yards, 
and this gives us a diameter for the outer circle 
round the ditch of nearly 3,200 yards 1 . 

In the centre of the city was a great circular area, 
at first only partially occupied by palaces and the 
mosque, but which in time came to be built over 
like the rest of Baghdad, and this area, which 
measured about 2,000 yards (over a mile) across, 
was enclosed by the innermost circular wall with 
its four gateways 2 . In the centre of this area stood 

1 Baladhuri, 295 ; Tabari, iii. 276, 277 ; YaTcubi, 238. The ell used 
was the Hashimite or Black Ell, which may be roughly estimated at 
half a yard. The measurement given above is from Yalcubi, p. 238. 
Other and later authorities vary considerably. Thus Yakut, i. 683, 
says that from gate to gate measured an Arab mile, i. e. 4,000 ells or 
2,000 yards, which agrees fairly well with Ya kubi. On the other hand, 
Khatib (folio 65 b) states that the Caliph Mutadid, who reigned from 
279 to 289 (892 to 902 A.D.), used to point out the limits of the old city 
as covering an area two Arab miles across in every direction. Khatib 
also cites (folio 68 b) another tradition, namely, that while from 
the Khurasan Gate to that of Kufah measured 800 ells (400 yards), 
from the Syrian Gate to that of Basrah measured only 600 ells 
(300 yards). This tradition, however, appears to be untrustworthy, 
aSlt is supported by no other known authority, and would make the 
city oval, while all other accounts agree that it was circular in plan ; 
Khatib himself later on implying this, when (folio 69 b) he asserts that 
the diameter of the city only measured 2,200 ells, that is 1,100 yards, 
though this last must certainly be an under estimate. 

1 There is an apparent confusion in the descriptions of the Round 
City, which speak of two walls and describe three. This is because 
the inner wall, round the central area, which was not a rampart, is not 
counted as a town wall. The double walls are the two outer ramparts, 
and these for clearness are in the following pages designated the outer 



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n.] The City of Mansur 19 

the Palace of the Caliph (called the Golden Gate), 
and beside it the Great Mosque; while from the 
four gates of the inner wall round the central area 
the four highroads led out, radiating like the spokes 
of a wheel, each in turn passing through the gate- 
ways in the double walls, and finally crossing the 
ditch. Apparently the gateways in the two outer 
walls ^had each double g ates^Jpr it is stated that 
from the outermost city gateway to the gateway 
leadmg_into_the_ central area there were in alLiixe 
gales~to-pass< This system of concentric circular 
walls with a central palace was, as already said, 
an innovation in the plan of a Moslem city* first 
introduced by Manstir, who declared that the 
sovereign, should thus live in the rentre oLgJl and 
equidistaniJfrom jail 

The walls of Baghdad were built with sui>dried 
bricks of extraordinary size. It is stated that some 
bricks were cubical, and measured an ell (18 inches) 
every way, and these weighed 200 ratls or pound 
weights. Others were half bricks, shaped square 
(somewhat like the Roman bricks), being 9 inches 
thick, with the surface measuring 18 inches by the 
like, and these were of the weight of 100 ratls. 
That these weights, as reported by tradition, are not 
fictitious, but substantially correct, is shown by the 
fact that when part of the wall built by Man§ftr was 
afterwards demolished, an ancient brick was found 
on which was written in red paint, 'weight 117 
ratls/ and the trial then made proved that this 
was exact. We are told further that the courses 
of bricks in the city walls were not bonded together 

and the main wall. The inner wall was merely a partition to enclose 
the area of the palace and mosque. 

C 2 



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20 Baghdad during the Caliphate [erf. 

with wooden beams (as would seem to have been the 
common usage among the Arabs), but with bundles 
of reeds : and it is stated that 162,000 bricks were 
set in each course. Of the double walls the jnner 
was the higher, and sufficiently broad to be of the 
nature of a rampart. According to one account 
this, the main wall, was 90 feet high, and at its 
foundations measured 105 feet across (another ac- 
count giving the lower width at 90 ells, or 135 feet, 
but this appears to be a clerical error), while at the 
summit it narrowed to 37^ feet. The outer wall 
was, by all accounts, less massive in its construction, 
and apparently it is this wall whose dimensions are 
given by Tabarl as 75 feet across at the foundations, 
narrowing to 30 feet at the summit, with a height 
that may be set down at about 60 feet 1 . 

The doors of the four gateways in the mainjwall 
were of iron, and some curious details as to their 
origin are^gfven us by Tabarl. It is said that King 
Solomon, the son of David, had founded a city in 
lower Mesopotamia called Zandaward ; and near 
this ancient town, in the days of the Omayyad 
Caliphs, Hajjfij, their great viceroy in 'Ir&k, had 
built the Moslem city of W&sit. Now by command 
of King Solomon the Shay tins of old had made 
five iron gates for Zandaward, and these, being 
such as no living man could have made, HajjSj took 
from the old city, already then a ruin, and set them up 

1 Khatib (folio 69b) gives other dimensions for the main wall: 
namely, height 35 ells (or 52 J feet), and width below 20 ells (or 30 feet). 
Ya'kubi, however, is the better authority, and his figures are those 
given above. To avoid needless repetition in the following pages, 
measurements in the Arab ell (Dhird*) are given in feet or yards, at 
the rate of two ells to three feet, which is a sufficiently exact estimate 
for all practical purposes. 



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a.] The City of Mansur 21 

in the gateways of WAsit. This was about the year 
84 (703 a.d.), and half a century later Man§tir ordered 
these famous gates to be carried away from WAsit, 
bringing them up the Tigris to adorn the rising walls of 
Baghdad. Tabarl states that in his day (say 300 a. h.) 
the five gates of Solomon were still to be seen, but 
what their subsequent fate was is nowhere recorded. 
Four out of the five closed the four gateways of 
the main wall of Baghdad, and the fifth was the 
gate of the Palace of Man§tir in the central area. In 
the outer wall the four gates were of diverse origin : 
the Khur&sin Gate which had been brought from 
Syria, was said to be of Pharaonic workmanship; 
the Ktifah Gate had been made in that city by a 
certain Khalid, son of 'Abd-Allah, a Moslem crafts- 
man ; the Syrian Gate, recognized as being the 
weakest of the four, was constructed in Baghdad 
by order of Manstir ; lastly, where the Basrah Gate 
came from is not known \ 

Any one entering the City of Manstir would, after 
crossing the ditch which encircled the outer wall, 
pass in by one of these four gates, from each of which 
a thoroughfare led directly to the great central area. 
The ditch was kept filled with_ water brought by 
underground conduits from the KarkhiyA Canal, 
which will be described later, and on the inner side 
of the ditch rose an embankment or dyke, leading 
in quarter-circles from gate to gate round the city, 
this dyke having its sides lined with kiln-burnt 
bricks, carefully cemented. 

1 Khatib, folios 68 b, 69 b; Ibn Serapion, 50, note 4; Tabari, iii. 
277, 278, 321, 322 ; Ya kubi, 238, 239 ; idem, History, ii. 449 ; Marasid, 
i. 454. Zandaward was also the name of a Nestorian monastery in 
East Baghdad, as will be seen later. 



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22 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Above the dyke and the ditch rose the outer wall, 
crowned with battlements described as 'circular,' 
and this wall was flanked by bastions. Between the 
Ktifah Gate and that of Ba§rah there were twenty- 
nine bastions, while between each of the other gates 
there were only twenty-eight, which reckoned out 
would give a bastion for about every sixty yards 
of wall length. 

It is to be noted that the four thoroughfares 
leading respectively from each of the outer gates 
to the central area were all exactly alike, and hence 
the following description will apply indifferently to 
the Ktifah roadway, or that entering by the Basrah, 
the Khur&s&n, or the Syrian Gate. 

Each of the four gateways of the outer wall was 
surmounted by a gre at g atehouse, the hall or 
passage-way of which was flanked - by porticoes, 
both hall and porticoes being vaulted with burnt 
bricks set in mortar. The hall of the gatehouse 
measured 120 feet in length, and it therefore must 
have traversed not only the outer wall, which, as 
already said, was 75 feet in width at base, but also 
have extended over the dyke and part of the culvert 
crossing the ditch 1 . Passing in through this hall 
and thus traversing the outer defences, the thorough- 
fare from the gatehouse led to a small square, paved 
with flagstones, and enclosed by walls 30 yards long 
by 20 yards broad, occupying the space between 
the gatehouses respectively of the outer and the 
main wall. For purposes of defence, the ground, 
measuring 50 yards across, was left unoccupied 

1 Khatib, folio 70 a, gives the dimensions of the gate-hall as only 
30 ells by 20 (45 feet by 30); possibly this was the size of an outer 
portico. 



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ii.] The City of MansUr 23 

between the two outer city walls, this forming a 
circular ring in four quadrants, and making a con- 
venient roadway from gate to gate immediately 
within the outer line of defence, each quadrant of 
the ring being reached at either end from the paved 
squares within the outer city gates. 

On the inner side of each paved square, afore- 
said, rose the gatehouse of the main wall, surmounted 
by a great dome or cupola, with a portico before 
the gateway. The iron doors closing these four 
gateways have already been described, and it is 
reported that each of these was so ponderous that 
it took a company of men to open or to shut it; 
while the gateway was so lofty that, as Ya'ktibi 
writes, ' a horseman with his banner, or a spearman 
with his lance, could enter the same freely and 
without lowering the banner or couching the lance/ 
The main wall, as already stated, was a great 
rampart of sun-burnt bricks, 90 feet high and 12 \ 
yards broad along the top, one account adding that 
it was surmounted by battlements and little turrets, 
these last being each 7^ feet high. The upper 
level of the main wall could be reached from each 
of the four gatehouses by a gangway, probably 
rising in gradients, for it is said that a horseman 
could ride up, and this gangway was carried over 
the vaultings which formed the roof of the portico 
in front of the gatehouse. Within, the portico was 
occupied by the horse and foot-guards of the Caliph, 
and the vaulted roof is described as of unequal 
height, part being constructed of great unburnt bricks 
and part of burnt brick set in mortar, the gangway 
(already mentioned) rising over the various levels of 
the vaultings to the summit of the wall, from whence 



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24 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the cupola crowning the gatehouse was reached. 
The various passages were all closed off by doors, 
and the top_siory of each gatehouse Jil_ the main 
wall was occupied by an upper chamber {Majlis) 
overlooking the city, that above the KhurAsin Gate, 
especially, having been a favourite resting-place of 
the Caliph Man§ur. Mas fidl relates an anecdote of 
how an arrow, bearing a warning, was shot up and 
fell at the feet of the Caliph as he was once seated 
here, and the historian takes occasion to remark 
that this Gate of Khurisdn was in old days often 
called B&b-ad-Dawlah, the Gate of Good Fortune 
or the Gate of the Dynasty, because the Dynasty 
(Dawlah) or Good Fortune of the Abbasids had 
come to them out of Khurisdn. 

The cupola over the upper chamber of each gate- 
house was supported on columns of teak wood ; it 
was green in colour outside, being probably covered 
with tiles, and within the ceiling was wrought in 
gold work, vaulted, the interior height being 75 feet 
above its flooring. Crowning the cupola was a 
figure which served as a wind-vane, 'the equal of 
which was not elsewhere to be seen.' Lastly, it is 
stated that the hall below the cupola of each gateway 
in the main wall was 1 8 feet broad and 30 feet long, 
and this hall apparently occupied part of the thick- 
ness of the wall. 

Between the main wall and the third or inner wall 
enclosing the central area was another broad circular 
ring of ground, which (like the outer ring already 
described) was of course divided into four quadrants 
by the thoroughfares from the gates. Summing up 
the measurements given by Khattb, it would appear 
that its width from the main' wall to the inner wall 



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ii.] The City of Mansitr 25 

must have been somewhat less than 150 yards 
across, while each of its four quadrants measured 
in length about a mile from gate to gate. Unlike 
the outer ring (which was vacant), these quadrants 
were occupied by houses forming streets and lanes, 
and though the space between the main and inner 
walls was somewhat narrow, the total area of the 
four quadrants was not inconsiderable, amounting 
to over a third of a squarejnile iathe aggregate. 

The thoroughfare between the gates of the main 
and the inner wall began and ended respectively in 
an outer and inner square — a double line of arcades 
connecting the two — and from these squares and 
the arcades access was obtained, right and left, 
to the streets and houses. Returning, therefore, to 
the gate in the main wall, after passing in through 
this, the outer square would be reached, measuring 
10 yards in length and breadth, from which to right 
and to left gateways opened to the road which ran 
on the inner side of the main wall separating it 
from the houses ; while straight on from the outer 
square, and leading to the inner square in front of 
each gateway of the central area, was the roadway 
flanked on either side by the arcades. This road 
was 7^ yards broad, being 100 yards in length 
from square to square ; and the archways form- 
ing the arcades are stated to have numbered 
fifty-three, probably twenty-six on either hand, 
and one at the end, through which lay the 
entrance from the outer square. The archways 
were all alike, and at its entrance the road could 
be closed off by double doors of teak wood. The 
arcades were vaulted, being built of burnt brick 
set in mortar, and they had 'Grecian windows' 



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26 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

(Kiwd R&mtyafi) opening on the roadway, these 
being probably of pierced tiles, which while letting in 
the sunlight kept out the rain; and rooms in the 
arcades were originally tenanted by the Ghulfims, 
the pages of the Caliph l . The markets, within the 
City of Man§tir, had originally occupied the four 
roadways from the gates flanked by these arcades, 
but before many years had passed the Caliph 
ordered all the shops to be removed from within the 
city, and he then built the suburb of Karkh, as will 
be described in a following chapter, for the accom- 
modation of the market people and the merchants, 
the arcades thus cleared of the shops being used as 
permanent barracks for the city police and the horse- 
guard. At the end of the arcades came the inner 
square, measuring 10 yards by the like, which fronted 
the gateway in the circular wall enclosing the central 
area, while close to the gateway stood a double row 
of small arcades, these probably being on either side 
of the portico before the gatehouse. 

Between the main and the inner wall, as already 
said, the area of the four quadrants divided off by 
the thoroughfares from the gates, was in the earlier 
times built over by the houses of the immediate 
followers of the Caliph Man§fir, to whom had been 
granted here plots of land, and before long the 
whole space had come to be covered by a network 
of roads and lanes. But the Caliph did not allow 
his people to' build their houses close up against 
either the main wall or the wall of the central 
area, for immediately within the main wall an 
open ring I2j yards broad was kept clear as 

1 Ya'kubi, 239 ; idem, History, ii. 449 ; Ibn Rustah, 108 ; Khatib, 
folios 68 a, 69 b, 70 a, b, 72 a ; Mas'udi, vi. 171. 



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ii.] The City of Mansikr 27 

a roadway, while outside the wall of the central 
area there was also a clear space forming a road. 
The houses in the streets and lanes of each quad- 
rant could also, at need, be closed off from these 
roads by strong gates. 

The streets here in most cases continued to be 
called after the names of those who had become 
the owners of the houses and gardens when Manstir 
had first built the Round City : the full list is given 
in Ya'kAbt, but this being merely a catalogue of 
proper names, it is needless here to transcribe. In 
the quadrant of houses on the south side, that 
between the thoroughfares leading respectively to 
the Ba§rah and Kufah Gates, the Caliph built his 
great^prison called the Matbak, standing in the 
street of the same name, ' constructing it with well- 
built walls and solid foundations;' and until the 
reign of Mutawakkil, grandson of H&rtin-ar-Rashid, 
this remained the chief prison of Western Baghdad. 
One of the roads near here was called after the Sunnl 
Imfim Abu tfanlfah, who, as already mentioned, 
had aided the Caliph Man§tir when laying out the 
plan of the city. In some of the quadrants also 
the streets were named after the trades of their 
inhabitants, thus for instance between the Ba?rah 
and the Khur&sdn Gates was the Street of the 
Water-carriers, and in another quadrant we find 
the Street of the Muadhdhin (or Crier to prayer), 
and the Street of the Horse-guards. 

The great central area of the Round City, as 
already stated, was enclosed by the _i nner wall^ 
pierced by the four gates leading to the main 
thoroughfares, and its circle must have had a 
diameter of nearly 2,000 yards, being in other 



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28 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

words over a mile across. The gatehouses, which 
thus opened into the central area from each of the 
four squares at the end of the arcades already 
described, were alike, and each gatehouse^ had 
a vaulted portico before it, built of burnt bricks 
set in mortar, leading into a great hall or passage- 
way closed by an iron door. It would appear that 
at first the wall of the central area had been pierced 
by many doorways leading directly to the houses and 
streets in the four quadrants immediately outside 
this wall ; but these openings the Caliph Mansfir, 
at an early period, caused to be walled up, only 
the four gates to the thoroughfares being kept open. 
Manstir further commanded that no one but himself 
should enter the central area riding, and everybody 
else had to leave his horse or mule at one of 
the four gatehouses. It is related that 'tsi ibn 'All, 
uncle of the Caliph, complained that he suffered so 
much from weakness as to be unable to walk the 
distance of about half a mile from the gatehouse 
across to the palace, and he petitioned to be allowed 
to ride in on his horse or else to make use of 
a sumpter mule. Mansflr, however, bade him in 
that case betake himself to a woman's litter, and 
when'lsSt replied that he was ashamed before the 
people to appear thus, the Caliph declined to allow 
any exception to be made in his favour. On the 
other hand it is reported that Diftd ibn 'Alt, 
another uncle of the Caliph, being very gouty, was 
for a time permitted to be carried to the palace in 
his litter, and the same privilege was also granted 
to the heir-apparent Mahdi. On another of the 
uncles of the Caliph, 'Abd-a^^amad by name, ask- 
ing for a similar favour, the Caliph was induced to 



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ii.] The City of Mansur 29 

promise him the privilege of being carried by one of 
the pack-mules commonly employed for bringing 
in the filled water-skins for the use of the palace, so 
soon as he, 'Abd-a§-$amad, should succeed in laying 
a conduit to bring water direct from outside the 
Khur&sSn Gate into the palace tanks. This work 
c Abd-as-$amad successfully accomplished, making 
the conduits of teak-wood (Sdj), and the Caliph 
afterwards improved on the invention by digging 
permanent watercourses from both the Dujayl Canal 
and from the Karkhiyi, thus bringing a plentiful 
supply of water iffto the palace and other parts of 
the Round City. The beds of these new water- 
courses he laid in cement, and they were arched 
over throughout their whole length with burnt 
bricks set in mortar, so that both summer and 
winter (as it was said) in after-times water never 
failed in any of the streets or quarters of the City 
of Man§tir K 

1 Tabari, iii. 322, 323, 324 ; Ya'kubi, 240, 241 ; Khatib, folios 72 a, b, 
73 a, b ; also Yakut, i. 284, where (line 9) read Munakrisan (gouty) for 
Mutafarrisan, which, in this context, has no sense. Ibn Khallikan, 
No. 9, p. 16; No. 128, p. 30. 



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CHAPTER III 
the city of mansAr (continued) 

The Palace of the Golden Gate, and the Diwans or Public Offices. 
The history of the Great Mosque of Mansur. Khilid the Barmecide 
and the Palace of the Chosroes. Sums spent. The Khuld Palace 
outside the Khurasan Gate. The*foundation of Rusafah. Question 
how long the Round City remained standing : the siege in the reign of 
Amfn. The Main Wall. Inundations destroy walls and houses. 

The middle of the central area was occupied by 
the palace of the Caliph and the Great Mosque, the 
two standing side by side with a space kept free of 
houses all round, except on the north-west side, in 
the direction facing the Syrian Gate, where two 
buildings had been erected close up against the 
palace wall. One of these was the barrack for 
the horse^piiards of the Caliph, and the other is 
described as standing adjacent, and probably stretch- 
ing beyond the guardhouse ; it consisted of a broad 
gallery, divided into two parts, and was supported 
on columns of brickwork set in mortar. This double 
gallery had originally been intended to serve, on 
the one side, as the audience hall for the chief of the 
city police, on the other for the audience hall of 
the captain of the horse-guards ; but in later times, 
when Ya'kflbt wrote, they were, he says, for the most 



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The City of Manstir 31 

part used by the people as convenient places in 
which to say their prayers. Beyond the space 
which, as already stated, was kept clear all round 
the palace and mosque, and thence extending iback 
to the limit of the encircling inner wall, were built 
the various palaces of the younger children of the 
Caliph Man§flr and the houses of his servants, also 
the public offices, such as the Treasury and the 
Armoury, with the various buildings of the Chancery 
(or Secretariat), of the Office for the Land Tax, of the 
Privy Seal, of War and the Department of Public 
Works, of the Household of the Caliph and the 
Public Bakery, and finally of the Pay Office. 

The great palace of Mansftr, in the centre of his 
Round City, was known as the GoldenjGate (B&b- 
adh-Dhahab) or the Palace of the Green Dome 
(Al-Kubbat-al-Khadrfi) ; sometimes also it was 
namecnKe Golden Palace. Its area covered a 
space originally measuring about 200 yards square, 
and its central building was crowned by a great 
dome, green in colour as already said, on the sum- 
mit of which, at a height of 120 feet above the 
ground, and visible from all quarters of Baghdad, 
was the figure of a horseman. In later times this 
figure was credited with having been endowed 
originally with the magical power of pointing its 
lance in the direction from which the enemies of 
the Caliph were about to appear 1 . 

1 The account of the Magic Horseman is apparently first mentioned 
by Khatib, who wrote in 450 (1038 A.D.). It is copied by Yakut 
(i. 683), who is very angry at his predecessor for relating such fables, 
' only worthy of Balinas,' i. e. Apollonius of Tyana, adding that ' the 
religion of Islam is not glorified by such fables,' and assuring his 
readers that all this ' is but a cheat and a manifest lie.' It is seldom 
that Yakut shows so much common sense. 



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32 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Under the dome, on the ground-floor of the 
palace, was an audience chamber measuring 30 feet 
square, with a vaulted ceiling that was 30 feet 
high at the summit ; and above this was built 
a second chamber, of like dimensions to the first, 
and its ceiling was formed by the interior of the 
green dome. In front of the lower audience 
chamber was a great open alcove — after the Persian 
fashion and called the Ay win — surmounted by an 
arch, the key-stone of which was 45 feet above the 
pavement, and the width of this open Aywin was 
30 feet. 

This was the first palace that Mansftr built himself; 
then, a few years afterwards he began laying out 
the celebrated palace of the Khuld (to be described 
later), which stood outside the Khur&sin Gate of the 
Round City, on the Tigris bank. The Palace of 
the Golden Gate, however, appears to have been 
the official resi^enc&jaiLMansilr and his immedia te 
successors. H&rfin-ar-Rashtd, it is true, preferred 
the Khuld and lived for the most part there when 
staying in Baghdad, but his son Amin again held 
his court in the Palace of the Golden Gate, where 
he is said further to have added a building of his 
own invention, probably some sort of pinnacle or 
belvedere \ During the great siege of Baghdad 
in the year 198 (a.d. 814), when Amln began to be 
hard pressed by the troops of his brother Mamftn, 
it was within the Golden Gate with the walls of 
the Round City for a bulwark that his partisans 
made their final stand. The great palace must 

1 The word used by Tabari \sjandh, literally ' a wing,' but apparently 
here not a 'wing' of a building as we use the term: cf. Dozy, s.v. 
Jandh. 



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in.] The City of Man$ur 33 

then have suffered considerable damage, for during 
this siege the whole of the Round City was, for the 
space of several weeks, continuously bombarded by 
the catapults which T£hi r > the commander of the 
troops sent against his brother by Mamtin, had 
erected in the suburbs ; and though the Green 
Dome stood intact for more than a century after 
this time, the palace itself does not appear to have 
been used as a royal residence after the death of 
Amln. Three-quarters of a century later a con- 
siderable part of the Golden Palace was pulled down 
in order to enlarge the neighbouring mosque; the 
Green Dome, however, was left standing, and this 
only fell to ruin in the year 329 (a. d. 941). During 
the month of March of that year there were great 
storms in Baghdad with heavy rains, and finally, 
on the night preceding the eighth day of the month 
Jum&dt II, the Green Dome suddenly collapsed, 
having been just before struck by a thunderbolt 
and probably set on fire 1 . 

The Great Mosque, as already stated, was built 
by Man§tir side by side with his palace of the 
Golden Gate. The mosque did not exactly face 
the Mecca point, as it should have done, the cause 
being that its plan having only been laid down after 
the palace was completed, the quadrangle of the 
mosque, for the sake of symmetry, had to conform 
to the already existing lines of the palace walls. 
Hence the Kiblah point was askew, the true direc- 
tion of Mecca (it is said) bearing rather more 
towards the Ba§rah Gate than the compass-point, 
marked by the Nich (Mihr&b) in the end wall of 

1 Ya'kubi, 240 ; idem, History, ii. 450 ; Tabari, iii. 326, 930 ; Khatib, 
folios 68 b, 69 a, 99 b ; Yakut, i. 683, 684. 

BAGHDAD D 



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34 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the mosque, would indicate. To the spectator who 
faced Mecca-wards, the Great Mosque must have 
stood o n the left or south-eastern side of the 
Golden Palace — the guardhouses and halls it will 
be remembered were on the opposite, north-western, 
side — while the main fronts of both buildings, more 
or less in a line, looked towards the Khur£s£n Gate. 
Assuming that this gate stood exactly to the north- 
east in the line of the circular walls, the back wall of 
the mosque, with the Kiblah point marked in its 
centre by the Nich or Mihrib, would thus have 
pointed due south-west, while the true direction of 
Mecca from Baghdad is found to lie about south- 
south-west, or as the Moslem writers have described 
it, ' more towards the Basrah Gate/ than due south- 
west. 

When first planned, the mosque covered an area 
one-quarter that of the neighbouring palace, namely 
a square measuring 200 ells or 100 yards either 
way ; and the original structure was of sun-dried 
bricks set in clay, with a roof supported on wooden 
columns. Most of these columns were constructed 
of two or more beams or baulks of timber, joined 
together endwise with glue, and clamped with iron 
bolts ; but some five or six columns, those near the 
minaret, were formed each of a single tree-trunk. 
All the columns supported rqund_ capitals^jeach 
made of a block -QfLwood^ which was set on the 
shaft, like a drum. This was the first mosque built 
in Baghdad, and, as originally constructed by Man- 
stir, it stood for about half a century, when it was 
pulled down by Hirftn-ar-Rashid, who replaced its 
somewhat primitive structure by an edifice solidly 
built of kiln-burnt brick set in mortar. An inscrip- 



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in.] The City of Man§iir 35 

tion in honour of the Caliph H&rtin, mentioning 
also the names of the architects and master-masons, 
with the date — it was begun in 192 and finished 
a year later (a. d. 809) — was set up on the outer 
mosque wall, facing the Khur&sdn Gate; and this 
inscription, apparently, was seen by Khatlb, who 
wrote in 450 (a. d. 1058). This mosque in subse- 
quent times was commonly known as A§-$ahn-al- 
' Atlk (the Old Court). However, before many years 
had elapsed, its precincts had come to be too 
narrow for the number of the worshippers who 
crowded thither to the Friday prayers, and a neigh- 
bouring house called the Dir-al-Katt&n, which had 
originally been erected by the Caliph Man§tir for 
one of the Dlwins or public offices, was pressed 
into service by the people, and used as an additional 
mosque. This place, being the more convenient, 
by the year 260 or 261 (a. d. 875) had come to be 
almost exclusively used for the Friday prayers, and 
the older mosque was left empty, a state of affairs 
which was considered uncanonical by the reigning 
Caliph Mu'tadid, who was moved to remedy the 
case by ordering the restoration and enlargement 
of the Great Mosque. In the year 280 (a. d. 893), 
therefore, a part of the neighbouring palace of 
the Golden Gate was thrown down and its site 
added to the area of the mosque; and to this 
extension access was given by seventeen arches, 
pierced in the partition wall originally separating 
the two buildings — thirteen archways opening from 
the palace area into the Mosque Court, and four 
into the Riw&ks, the aisles or porticoes. Further, 
and by order of the Caliph, the pulpit, the Mecca 
Nich (Mihrib), and the Mak§tirah or oratory, were 

d 2 



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36 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

all fully restored and beautified, while what still 
remained standing of the old mosque of the time 
of Hfirtin-ar-Rashtd was thoroughly cleaned and set 
in order. Khaftb mentions that Badr, the celebrated 
Wazlr of Mu tadid, was more especially made re- 
sponsible for carrying into effect these additions 
made to the mosque from the adjacent area of the 
old palace of Man?flr, and Khatfb adds that, in his 
honour, these newer portions came afterwards to 
be known as the Badriyah. Thus enlarged and 
restored, the mosque is described by Ibn Rustah, 
who wrote about the year 290 (a. d. 903), as a c fine 
structure of kiln-burnt bricks well mortared, which 
is covered by a roof of teak wood supported on 
columns of the same, the whole being ornamented 
with (tiles the colour of) lapislazuli.' 

During five centuries and more, while the Abbasid 
Caliphs ruled in Baghdad, this mosque of the City 
of Man§ftr continued in use for the Friday prayers, 
and its name frequently recurs in the chronicles. 
In the year 450 (a.d. 1058) the rebel Basistri, when 
master of Baghdad, temporarily desecrated it by 
causing the heretical Fatimite Caliph of Egypt to 
be prayed for publicly on the Friday from its pulpit; 
but this was only a passing insult to Sunnl ortho- 
doxy, and the mosque was, on the defeat of the 
rebels, restored to the true Commander of the 
Faithful. The Jew, Benjamin of Tudela, who visited 
Baghdad about a century after this, namely in a.d. 
1 1 60, relates how the Caliph, who now had come 
to be but rarely seen outside the walls of his great 
palace in East Baghdad, once a year, at the feast 
of the close of the Ramad&n fast, visited in state 
'the mosque of the Ba§rah Gate quarter,' as the 



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in.] The City of Mansur 37 

Jewish traveller names it, adding that this was still 
the metropolitan mosque of Baghdad. The building 
appears even to have passed unhurt through the 
great Mongol siege of the year 656 (a.d. 1258), for 
its name does not occur in the list of the mosques 
and shrines which were burnt and subsequently 
restored by order of Hfil&gft; and in the year 727 
(a.d. 1327), when Ibn Bafftfah visited Baghdad, the 
mosque of Man§ftr is mentioned as still standing. 
At the present day, however, all traces of it have 
entirely disappeared, and no remains apparently 
were to be seen even in the last century, when 
Niebuhr visited Baghdad, though the exact date 
of its demolition is unknown l . 

As already remarked, the houses of Baghdad 
were for the most part built of sun^drigd-bricksy 
a fact which must account for there being now 
hardly any ruins of the ancient city. Kiln-burnt 
bricks were, of course, to some extent used in many 
of the public buildings, and at one time it would 
appear that the Caliph Mansflr had even had some 
intention of taking the stones from the ruins of 
MadAin (the ancient Ctesiphon and Seleucia), a few 
leagues below Baghdad, on the Tigris bank, which 
lay, therefore, conveniently to hand as a quarry for 
building materials. In connexion with this matter 
an anecdote is given, in which Kh&lid, the first of 
the Barmecides who rose to power at the Abbasid 
court, plays a prominent part: he representing 

1 Tabari, iii. 322; Khatib, folios 99 a to 100 b; Ibn Rustah, 109; 
Ibn-al-Athir, ix. 441 ; Benjamin of Tudela, i. 97 ; Ibn Batutah, ii. 107. 
Timur took Baghdad in the year 795 (a.d. 1393), and a year afterwards 
ordered the city to be rebuilt : the old mosque of Mansur may have 
disappeared at this time, though no mention of it is made by Sharaf- 
ad-Dm. 



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38 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the Persian influences which were later on to be 
supreme. This Khfilid, son of Barmak, was a 
native of Balkh, where his father, a Magian of 
some note, had become a Moslem at the time of the 
first Arab conquest. Kh&lid himself had emigrated 
westward when the Abbasid armies had been raised, 
and had taken service under the first Caliph of the 
new dynasty, Saffih, by whom he was appointed 
Wazlr, in which post Mansftr had retained his ser- 
vices after his brother's death. When Baghdad was 
founded it became a question, as already said, 
whether the plentiful materials of stone and brick 
existing at Mad&in might not be used with advan- 
tage for the buildings of the new city. There was 
in particular the great White Palace of the Chosroes, 
which Man§fir now proposed to demolish, and he 
took counsel of Kh&lid the Barmecide how the work 
should be carried out The latter, however, im- 
mediately strove to hinder its execution, trying to 
persuade the Caliph to go elsewhere for his building 
materials: this ancient palace, said Kh&lid, had 
become an abiding proof of the might of Islam ; 
it was an enduring monument, for all who should 
behold it, of how the worldly glory of its builder, 
the great Chosroes, had come to naught before 
the religion of the Arabs, who had overthrown the 
Persian monarchy, and whose sovereign now ruled 
in its stead ; and Kh&lid is reported to have added, 
* Further, O Commander of the Faithful, the Caliph 
'All did make his prayer in this palace, wherefore 
indeed let it stand.' Mansftr, however, was not to 
be turned from his purpose; he told Kh&lid that, 
with alj this specious reasoning, his real objection 
to the destruction of the palace of the Chosroes 



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hi.] The City of Mans&r 39 

lay in his (Kh&lid's) veneration for the ancient 
Persian monarchs and their monuments, and despite 
his advice the Caliph ordered the demolition 
of the White Palace to be begun. When in part 
this had been accomplished, it was found that the 
cost of breaking down the walls and then trans- 
porting the materials upstream was greater than 
the price that new material in Baghdad would come 
to ; and Man§Gr without further loss of time put a 
stop to this extravagant demolition. Khfilid there- 
upon came forward and urged the Caliph for very 
shame to continue his work, and pull down the 
palace to its foundation ; otherwise, as he pointed 
out, men would say that Mansftr, the Successor of 
the Prophet, was impotent even to destroy what 
the Chosroes had built. The Caliph, however, with 
practical common sense declined to ruin himself on 
account of what men might say, and the work was 
permanently abandoned. At a later date, as will 
be mentioned in a subsequent chapter, part of this 
Mad&in palace was pulled down to supply materials 
for building the T&j, a palace in Eastern Baghdad 
begun by the Caliph Mu tadid. On this latter 
occasion, however, the work of demolition must have 
been only in part carried out, for the ruins of the 
White Palace still tower above the Tigris bank 
at Ctesiphon, the solid building of the Sassanian 
epoch having survived the palaces of the Caliphs, 
to be a record, if the anecdote be true, of the 
patriotic spirit displayed by the first of the Barme- 
cides. This Kh&lid, son of Barmak, it will be 
remembered, was the father of Yahy&, who with 
his two sons, the Wazlr J a far and the courtier Fadl, 
enjoyed the favour and contributed so much to the 



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40 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

glory of HirAn-ar-Rashld : their ultimate disgrace 
and sudden downfall being the proverbial example 
in Oriental history of the change of fortune and 
the mutability of royal favour 1 . 

Some curious details are given by our authorities 
regarding the sums of money which the Caliph 
Man§Gr, who was noted for his parsimony, spent on 
the building of Baghdad. The sum total disbursed, 
when the Caliph came to take the accounts, for 
building the palace and the double walls, and for 
digging the ditch, is set down by Tabari at 4,000,833 
silver dirhams, and in addition of copper coins {/lis) 
they had spent 100,023,000. These figures (with 
minor variations, probably due to the errors of 
copyists) are repeated by many subsequent authori- 
ties, and turned into modern currency the sum in 
dirhams is Equivalent to about ;£ 160,000, while the 
copper coins come to some ^200,000. Khafib, and 
Y&ktit (following him), on the other hand, estimate 
the sum total at 18,000,000 gold dlnirs, equivalent 
to about ,£9,000,000 sterling in our money, and some 
further variations in the figures are given by Khajtb 
in his history of Baghdad 2 . 

Such was the Round City, the building of which 
Man§fir had completed by the year 149 (a.d. 766); 
and shortly after this date the great suburbs, which 
will form the subject of the following chapters, began 
to be laid out beyond the three gates of Basrah, 
KAfah, and Syria. 

At the Khurisfin Gate, opening on the Tigris and 
the Main Bridge of Boats, the Caliph, as already 

1 Tabari, iii. 320; Yakut, i. 426. 

1 Tabari, iii. 326; Mukaddasi, 121; Khatib, folio 65 b; Yakut, i. 
683. 



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in.] The City of Mansur 41 

stated, built himself a second great palace which he 
called the Khuld, and the later history of this palace 
will be given in a subsequent chapter 1 . 

The opposite or eastern bank of the Tigris had 
hitherto been unoccupied by any buildings, when 
Mansfir, the Round City being now completed, in the 
year 151 (a.d. 768) proceeded to lay the foundations 
of a mosque and palace on the Persian side of 
the river^and tKe^ne^ suburb took the name of 
Rus&fah (the Causeway), from the dyked road leading 
across the marsh-land in the bend of the Tigris. 
This causeway started from the further end of the 
bridge of boats ; and the suburb of Ru§4fah formed 
the nucleus of Eastern Baghdad, which afterwards 
came to be the main half of the metropolis when the 
Caliphs, after building the eastern palaces, took up 
their abode here, and transferred the government 
offices to the Persian side of the stream. Hence it 
came about that the Caliph Man§tir was not only the 
founder of Western, but also of Eastern Baghdad, 

1 It is nowhere precisely stated what was the orientation of the four 
gates of the Round City ; but they are known to have been equidistant, 
and a number of considerations tend to the conclusion that they must 
almost exactly have faced respectively the NE. and the NW., the SE. 
and the SW. points. Trial on the map shows that no other position 
will better suit the circumstances of the case, for, since the course of 
the Tigris going through Baghdad ran from north-west to south-east, 
(1) the Khurasan Gate, which opened on the main bridge, must have 
faced north-east, being at right angles to the river, and (2) the Basrah 
Gate south-east, this opening on the road which went down parallel 
with the Tigris. Then, as will be seen in the next chapter, from 
outside (3) the Kufah Gate two roads diverged, one south to Kufah, 
the other turning westward to Muhawwal and Anbar— south-west, 
therefore, halfway between the two points, will suit the requirements 
for this gate ; while (4) the Syrian Gate which faced north-west gave 
access both to the northern suburbs and to the Anbar road, which last 
turned off at a right angle to the northern roads and ran due west 
from beyond this gate to the nearest point on the Euphrates. 



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42 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

which last in time totally eclipsed the glory of the 
Round City on the Arabian side of the Tigris. 
Eastern Baghdad will be described in later chapters : 
at present it is enough to note that the plan of 
Ru§£fah having been laid out by Mansfir in 151 
(a.d. 768), Mahdl the son, and in after-times the suc- 
cessor of Man§Gr, arrived in the month Shawwil 
of that year from Khuris&n, at the head of his 
troops, and the Caliph gave orders that these should 
remain encamped on the Persian side of the Tigris. 
The land round the new mosque and palace of 
Ru§ifah being thus occupied by the troops, their 
leaders received grants of fiefs, and many houses 
were built, the new quarter taking the name of 
'Askar-al-Mahdl, or the Camp of Mahdl 1 . 

In concluding this description of the Round City 
of Man§Gr, the question will be asked — how long, 
with the rapid growth of Western and then of Eastern 
Baghdad, this burgh or citadel with its four gates, 
triple concentric walls, and ditch, continued to exist 
intact. The chronicles nowhere definitely state when 

1 During the earlier centuries of the Abbasid period, the Tigris, 
within the limits of Baghdad, was crossed at three places by bridges 
of boats. These will be more particularly noticed in a later chapter ; 
in the following pages, for the sake of brevity, and clearly to distinguish 
them, they are referred to as (1) the Upper Bridge, (2) the Main Bridge, 
and (3) the Lower Bridge. The second of these is the bridge of boats 
in front of the Khurasan Gate of the Round City ; the first being the 
bridge crossing about a mile above this point, immediately below the 
Upper Harbour, while the third was the bridge of boats crossing 
the Tigris probably at a point below the mouth of the Sarit. Canal. 
As will be explained in chapter xiii, the single bridge of boats which 
in modern times connects Eastern Baghdad wifh its western suburb, 
cannot be identical in position with any one of the three above 
mentioned, but is that referred to by Yakut in the seventh century 
(the thirteenth a.d.), and which apparently was first moored opposite 
the palaces of the Caliphs, at about the close of the fifth century (the 
eleventh a.d.). 



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hi.] The City of MansUr 43 

the City of Man§flr fell to ruin ; but it is evident that 
of the triple walls, the innermost, namely that sur- 
rounding the central area, being merely an enclosing 
wall and not a rampart, must have disappeared before 
long, from the encroachment of the houses built in tne 
ring beyond it. Except in the description of the first 
building of the Round City, this inner walljs indeed 
apparently never mentioned in the chronicles of 
Tabari and his successors; neither does the ditch 
encircling the outer wall appear to have existed for 
long after the time of Man§fir, for no reference to it 
occurs in the accounts of the (first) siege of Baghdad, 
in the time of Amln. In the main, however, it 
appears that the Round City remained standing as 
Man§Gr had built it, till the death of H£rfin-ar- 
Rashld, grandson of Man?ftr, in 193 (a. d. 809). Five 
years later, at the close of the civil war which imme- 
diately after the death of HfirGn had broken out 
between his two sons Mamfln and Amln, the latter 
had as a last resort entrenched himself within the 
Round City, after garrisoning the Khuld Palace, on 
the western bank of the Tigris, with his troops. The 
siege of Baghdad at this time had already lasted for 
over a year ; T£hir and Harthamah, the two generals 
sent by the Caliph Mamfin against his brother, were 
blockading respectively Western and Eastern Bagh- 
dad, and T£hir finally found himself obliged to storm 
the Round City, which was stubbornly defended to 
the last by the partisans of Amln. 

The first destruction of the double walls must 
have been in part the work of the soldiers of T&hir 
during the assault which ended the first siege of 
Baghdad in the year 198 (a.d. 814), but through- 
out the succeeding century much of the Round City 



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44 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

would appear to have remained standing. The palace 
of the Golden Gate in the centre, as has already been 
mentioned, only fell to ruin in 329 (a.d. 941), and 
the mosque was in use down to the eighth century 
(the fourteenth a.d.) after the Mongol siege. In 
regard to the main wall of the Round City, Ibn 
Serapion, writing about the year 300 (a.d. 913), states 
that a canal coming down the road outside the KAfah 
Gate threw off a branch which entered ' part of the 
remains of the City of Man§ftr/ proving that the line 
of the main wall in this quarter must have been cut 
or tunnelled through at the date in question. On 
the other hand K hat lb reports that in the year 307 
(a.d. 919) the populace of Baghdad, having risen 
in insurrection, broke open the prisons in the 
City of MansAr and set free their inmates. The 
prisoners, however, were promptly recaptured by 
the city police, who closed the iron gates of the City 
of Man?fir, and at their leisure hunted down the 
malefactors, who were thus entrapped within the 
circuit of the walls ; but this is apparently the last 
mention of these gates being closed. Inundations, 
both of the Tigris and of the Euphrates (the last 
coming down through the 'Isi Canal), were wont 
periodically to lay Baghdad in partial ruin — the 
waters having at all times been difficult to keep in 
check — and one such inundation is reported by 
Khatlb to have taken place in the year 330 and odd 
(about a.d. 942), which destroyed the arcades in 
the Round City near the Kflfah Gate. This inun- 
dation was caused by the bursting of the dams on the 
Euphrates at a place called Kubbln, which regulated 
the waterflow of the *ls4 Canal. A volume of black 
water, it is reported, burst suddenly into the Round 



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in.] The City of Mansur 45 

City, and the flood destroyed many houses, among 
others the house of the narrator, from whom Khatlb 
had copied his account, who was forced to remove 
his family up stream to Mosul, where he had to 
remain for two years, until the damage done by the 
flood had been repaired. In regard to the four great 
gatehouses in the main wall, Mas'ftdf, writing in the 
year 332 (a.d. 944), alludes incidentally to these as 
still standing in his day, apparently with their upper 
chambers and vaulted cupolas still intact; further 
(and in this he confirms the account given by Khatlb), 
the same author speaks of the green dome of the 
Palace of the Golden Gate as having fallen € in our 
own times/ evidently alluding to the ruin caused by 
the great storm of the year 329, which was just three 
years before Mas'tidi finished his chronicle called the 
Golden Meadows (Murfij-adh-Dhahab). 

With the close of the fourth century (the tenth 
a.d.) much of the older City of Man§Ar must have 
disappeared, and in the year 370 (a. d. 980), as will 
be described more fully in a later chapter, the 
site of the great palace of the Khuld outside its 
walls, which had remained for some decades an 
uninhabited ruin, was cleared, preparatory to the 
building of the New Hospital (Bimirist&n) by the 
Buyid Prince 'Adud-ad-Dawlah. From many inci- 
dental allusions in the chronicles, it would appear 
that various remaining portions of the Round City 
had gradually come to be absorbed among the 
buildings, forming the quarters of West Baghdad, 
which rose up beyond and round the four ancient 
gates of the City of Mansflr. Thus the Great 
Mosque, down to the period of the Mongol invasion, 
was counted as forming part of the Quarter at 



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46 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

the Ba§rah Gate; the Khur&sin Gate and its 
neighbourhood became incorporated into the market 
(Sfik) which had sprung up round the 'Adudl 
hospital, and was connected with the quarter along 
the river bank, known as the Sh&rf : while from the 
Mosque of Mansftr to beyond the Syrian Gate ruins 
extending over nearly a mile existed in the time of 
Y&kflt, namely the seventh century (the thirteenth 
a. d.), and the inhabited houses of the older city, 
round this gate, were then considered to form part 
of the Harblyah Quarter, which had formerly ex- 
tended to the northward beyond the gate. Lastly, 
the Ktifah Gate, which, as has been above described, 
had suffered much injury from the inundations, 
together with its adjacent streets and houses, would 
appear to have been absorbed into the Muhawwal 
Gate Quarter on the west, or to have come to form 
part of Karkh on the south, which latter quarter 
having survived all its rivals is now the only 
relic left standing of the ancient city of Western 
Baghdad \ 

1 See Plan, No. VII ; Ibn Serapion, 25 ; Khatib, folios 71 b, 72 b ; 
Mas'udi, vi. 171 ; Marasid, ii. 388, who mentions another bursting of 
the Kubbin dam during the reign of Musta'sim, the last Abbasid 
Caliph. 



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CHAPTER IV 



THE CANALS OF WESTERN BAGHDAD 

Ya kubt and Ibn Serapion. The older Dujayl Canal. The Nahr 'tsa 
and the Sarat Canal. The Katrabbul and Baduraya districts. The 
Trench of Tahir. The Karkhaya Canal and its branches. The Canal 
of the Syrian Gate. The Ba{a$iya and the channels of the Harbiyah 
Quarter. Comparative sizes of these various watercourses. 

Our systematic knowledge of the topography of 
Baghdad is derived from two nearly contemporary 
sources, namely Ya'ktibl, who wrote near the end of 
the third century of the Hijrah, and Ibn Serapion, 
whose work dates from the beginning of the fourth, 
in other words, respectively a short time before 
and after the year 900 a. d. The first of these 
authorities, Ya'ktibt, describes the various quarters 
and buildings of the city as thejcaretter would 
pass them when riding, in ""turn, along one or 
other of the great highroads which radiated to the 
chief points of the compass from the four gates 
of the Round City. Ibn Serapion, on the other 
hand, chiefly occupies himself with tracing out the 
network of canals whose ramifications traversed 
the suburbs of the Round City, which in his time 
had come to form Western and Eastern Baghdad. 
In the following pages it is by the intersection of 



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48 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch 

the various watercourses with the highroads that, 
combining the two descriptions, we are enabled to lay 
out a rough sort of triangulation, and thus remake 
the plan of the great city of the Caliphs, of which 
otherwise the few ancient ruins that still occupy the 
sites of its former buildings would hardly have 
afforded us sufficient data for the reconstruction 
of its topography. 

As is* well known, the Arabs had inherited from 
the Persians, their predecessors in Mesopotamia, 
the system of canalization which connected the 
lower course of the Euphrates with the Tigris, 
making the Sawdd — as the alluvial plain to the 
west and south of Baghdad was named — one of 
the most fruitful countries of the East. The system 
of canals thus adopted had for its object to employ 
the surplus waters of the Euphrates entirely for 
irrigating the lands lying between the two great 
rivers; while on the other hand the waters of the 
Tigris, being tapped by canals from its eastern 
bank, a portion of its stream was thus carried 
by irrigation channels through the lands which lay 
on the Persian or eastern side of the river. The 
greatest of the canals taken from the Tigris was 
the eastern offshoot called the KifCd-Nahrawin 
channel, dating from the days of the Chosroes, 
from which directly or indirectly the lands of 
Eastern Baghdad were irrigated; but at a sub- 
sequent period a lesser system of canals was also 
derived from the western bank of the Tigris 
above Baghdad — namely the Ish&klyah and the 
later Dujayl — from which, after the date when Ibn 
Serapion wrote, the lands to the north of Western 
Baghdad likewise came to receive their water supply 



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iv.] The Canals of Western Baghdad 49 

from the Tigris. The four great irrigation canals, 
which in part drained the Euphrates into the Tigris, 
bore respectively the names of the Nahr 'IsA, the 
Nahr $ar§ar, the Nahr Mdlik, and the Nahr Kflthfi, 
of which the highest up, namely the 'Isft Canal, 
supplied water to a full moiety of the lands of 
Western Baghdad. Further, at the time when the 
Caliph Man§6r was building the Round City, the 
older Dujayl Canal running from the Euphrates 
to the Tigris, with a course parallel to and above 
the Nahr 'fs&, was still in existence; and thus, 
during the first two centuries after the foundation 
of the city, Western Baghdad was irrigated solely 
by the waters of the Euphrates. At a date sub- 
sequent to this, namely by the close of the fourth 
century (the tenth a. d.), the Dujayl, by the silting 
in of its upper course, had ceased to receive the 
waters of the Euphrates ; and a new, shorter channel 
was then dug connecting the lower Dujayl with the 
Tigris, from the right bank of which it continued to 
draw its waters, irrigating the district of Maskln and 
supplying the needs of the Harbtyah Quarter of 
Western Baghdad, during subsequent times 1 . 

In order to gain a general idea of the ground 
plan of Western Baghdad in mediaeval times it will 
be convenient to summarize in this chapter the 
account which Ibn Serapion has given of the canals 
which embraced the Round City of Manstir in a 
network of waterways. All these, as already re- 
marked, were derived from one of two sources, 
namely, either from the Nahr 'Isft or from the 
Dujayl Canal. 

1 See/. R. A. £., 1895, * Notes on Ibn Serapion/ p. 747. The follow- 
ing description is from the Arabic text, pp. 14, 15, and pp. 24 to 28. 

BAGHDAD ', £ 



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50 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

The point where the Nahr c fs& left the Euphrates 
was almost on the same parallel of latitude as that 
occupied by Baghdad on the Tigris, and the c lsA 
Canal flowed, speaking generally, due east. At what 
Ibn Serapion describes as 'a short distance' — say 
one mile — before coming to the township of Muhaw- 
wal, which itself lay three miles distant from the 
City of Mansflr, the'ls& Canal bifurcated, and the 
left branch took the name of the Nahr-a§-$ar£t. 
The main channel, to the right, still keeping its 
name of the Nahr 'IsS, curving first southward and 
then north-east almost through a semicircle, traversed 
the great southern suburb of Karkh, and finally 
flowed out into the Tigris at a spot some little 
way below the City of Mansflr, which was known 
as Al-Fardah or 'the (Lower) Harbour.' 

The $ar&t Canal (the branch to the left at the 
bifurcation of the Nahr 'Isi above Muhawwal) fol- 
lowed a course almost parallel in direction with the 
parent channel, which ultimately brought it to 
the south-western side of the Round City at the 
Old Bridge, a short distance outside the KAfah 
Gate. From here it curved round the city wall, 
passed up in front of the Ba§rah Gate, and con- 
tinuing north-eastward for a short distance, flowed 
out into the Tigris below the gardens of the Khuld 
Palace, which, as already described, lay outside the 
Khur&s&n Gate, and to the right of the road leading 
to the Main Bridge of Boats. 

The line of the $ardt Canal formed the boundary 
dividing the two districts of Katrabbul and Bidur&yd 
one from the other, which, occupying the western 
bank of the Tigris, lay opposite to the two districts 
of Nahr Bftk and Kalwidhfi on the eastern side 



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iv.] The Canals of Western Baghdad 51 

of the river ; and hence the two halves of Baghdad, 
west and east, are described as standing on the 
ground where these four districts met. On the 
western side of the Tigris, with which we have 
now to deal, the land that lay on the left bank 
of the Sarfit, and upstream as regards the Tigris, 
or as the Arabs deemed it, the 'western* side 
of the Sar&t, was the Katrabbul district ; while from 
the right bank, or, as they wrote, to the ' east ' of 
the $arfit, stretched the B&dur&yd district, down- 
stream along the course of the Tigris. Hence, while 
the suburb of Karkh lay in B&dur&y&, the City of 
Man§Ar and its northern suburbs were situated in 
the Katrabbul district. 

The $arfit Canal, at a distance of one league from 
its point of origin (and therefore a mile or more 
before it reached the City of Man§Gr at the Kflfah 
Gate), bifurcated, and the left branch was called the 
Trench of Tdhir. This canal, turning sharp off 
to the north-east, almost at a right angle, flowed 
round the outer side of the northern suburb of 
Baghdad (called the Harblyah), and beyond this 
its waters joined the Tigris about a mile above the 
Round City, at a place which, like the mouth of 
the Nahr 'ls&, is known as 'the Harbour* (Al-Fardah). 
In the following pages, however, in order clearly to 
distinguish between the two Fardahs, they will be 
named respectively the Upper and the Lower 
Harbour. 

At a short distance down its course the Trench 
of T&hir threw out a branch canal to the right, 
which flowing south-east was known as the Little 
Sar&t, and this after a comparatively short course 
curved back to join the main $arit Canal at a point 

£ 2 



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52 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

just before the latter reached the wall of the City of 
Man?6r outside the KOfah Gate. 

From the foregoing description it will be seen 
that, upstream, the Round City and its northern 
suburb (the Flarblyah) stood in the space embraced 
betweenV the $ar&t Canal and its left branch the 
Trench of T^hir ; and that, downstream, the great 
southern suburb of Karkh covered the tract of 
ground which lay enclosed between the lower 
reaches of the $ar&t and the *ts4 Canal; while 
the right bank of the Tigris, in either case, formed 
the third side of these two triangular parcels of land 
on which Western Baghdad was thus built. 

The water-channels which, flowing between the 
Sar&t and the Nahr 'fs&, traversed the southern 
suburb of Karkh, were exclusively derived from the 
KarkhdyA Canal, a stream which the Nahr c ts& 
threw off from its left bank at a point about a mile 
below the Muhawwal township. The Karkhdy&, as 
its name implies, was in fact the ' Canal of Karkh ' ; 
and after sending out four branches to the left and 
one to the right, it finally discharged the remainder 
of its waters into the parent channel of the Nahr 
'fsd, at a place close above the Lower Harbour, 
where the 'Isfi Canal, as already noticed, itself dis- 
embogued into the Tigris. 

Of the four left-hand branches of the Karkh&y&, 
the first was called, in its upper reach, the Nahr 
Razln, while lower down it became the Nahr Abu 
'Attib. It traversed Inner Karkh, passing through 
the Pool of Zalzal, and ultimately flowing out into 
the $arit Canal just below the New Bridge outside 
the Basrah Gate of the Round City. The second 
left-hand branch was called the Nahr Bazz&zin 



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iv.] The Canals of Western Baghdad 53 

(the Canal of the Clothes-merchants). It passed 
through the Mart of the Clothes-merchants and other 
markets, finally flowing out direct into the Tigris 
after traversing the Sharklyah or * eastern suburb/ 
which lay outside the Basrah Gate on the river 
bank. The third branch, also to the left hand, was 
called the Nahr-ad-Dajfij (the Fowls' Canal), its 
banks being occupied by the poulterers, and this 
again ran out direct into the Tigris, following a 
nearly parallel course to the Nahr Bazz&ztn. The 
next branch from the KarkhdyS. was the single canal, 
which was taken from its right bank. This was 
called the Nahr-al-Kildb (the Canal of the Dogs), 
and it carried a moiety of the waters of the Karkh&y& 
back into the Nahr 'Isft, going to rejoin this last 
immediately below the Thorn Bridge (Kantarah- 
ash-Shawk), which will be spoken of later. The 
fifth branch of the Karkhdyi (being the fourth to 
the left) was called the Nahr-al-Kall&yln (the Canal 
of the Cooks who sold fried meats), and this after 
a short course flowed out into the third branch canal, 
already mentioned, namely that of the Poulterers or 
the Nahr-ad-Daj&j. Finally the Karkh4y& fell into 
the 'fsd Canal, as before stated, and its lower course 
took the name of the Nahr T^kik, as will be noticed 
in its due place. 

It has been already mentioned that the northern 
part of Baghdad, on this western bank of the Tigris, 
was called the Harblyah Quarter, and this neigh- 
bourhood was supplied with water from canals which 
branched from the Dujayl. Before, however, pro- 
ceeding to describe these, we must give attention 
to the small watercourse into which two of these 
channels from the Dujayl ultimately flowed. This 



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54 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

is called the Canal of the Syrian Gate, and it was 
a derivative of the first branch canal from the 
Karkh&yfi, namely the Nahr Raztn, from the left 
bank of which it was led off shordy after the Nahr 
Raztn had itself branched to the left from the parent 
stream of the KarkhdyA. 

This minor canal ran at a higher level than the 
neighbouring §ar&t, and turning northwards from 
the Raztn, its waters were carried over and across 
the main stream of the $ar&t by a conduit built in 
the masonry of the Old Bridge. Here the channel 
skirted the Ktifah highroad, and after going up 
some way towards the Kfifah Gate, it turned off 
to the left, and curved along outside the wall of the 
Round City (which lay to the right), flowing on 
towards the Syrian Gate. Before, however, reaching 
this, it sent off a branch to the right hand, which, 
as mentioned in the previous chapter, penetrated 
across the circular walls, disappearing among the 
remains of the City of Man§6r. Immediately before 
and again after reaching the Syrian Gate, the 
main channel of the small canal which we are 
describing, received on its left bank the surplus 
waters of two of the Harbiyah water-channels (as 
will be detailed in the next paragraph) ; it then 
finally turned northwards, and after flowing along 
the road leading from the Syrian Gate to the Upper 
Bridge of Boats, its stream ran dry in the quarter 
near this bridge, called the Zubaydtyah Fief. 

Coming finally to the water system of the Flar- 
btyah Quarter, it is to be noted that the three small 
watercourses which were brought into this suburb 
from the north, by conduits crossing the Trench of 
Tihir, all ran at the same high level as the small 



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iv.] The Canals of Western Baghdad 55 

canal of the Syrian Gate, just described. These 
three Harblyah watercourses were all derivatives 
of the canal called the Nahr Bat&(iy&, which finally 
gave its name more especially to the westernmost 
of the three branches, and which itself was taken 
from the right or western bank of the Dujayl Canal, 
some distance above Baghdad. 

Of these three branches of the Nahr Bat&tiyd, 
the first, from its left bank, and therefore that 
flowing most to the eastward and the nearest to 
the Tigris, passed into the Harblyah by the bridge 
} crossing the Trench of Tfihir at the \\ arb Gate, and 
after traversing the suburb by a somewhat serpentine 
course, finally poured its waters into the lower reach 
of the Canal of the Syrian Gate, as has been already 
mentioned. The next branch from the Batfifiyi 
Canal came into the Harblyah Quarter by a conduit 
specially built for the purpose, which spanned the 
Trench of T&hir between the Harb Gate and the 
next gate to the west, called the Iron Gate. This 
watercourse, like the first, also poured its overflow 
into the Canal of the Syrian Gate (after throwing 
off two minor channels, right and left), its point of 
junction being somewhat to the westward of the 
Syrian Gate. The third branch, called more par- 
ticularly the Bat&tiyS, Canal, entered the northern 
suburbs by the bridge at the Anb&r Gate, the 
westernmost of the four gates on the line of the 
Trench. This canal then flowed down the Anbir 
Road, but after a short course its waters failed, and 
it finally ran dry in branch-channels. It will thus 
be observed that all the water channels of the 
Harblyah Quarter sooner or later ran dry and failed, 
no water from them flowing out into the Tigris. 



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56 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

They were, indeed, mere water-conduits (Kan&t) 
rather than canals, and we are told that within the . 
limits of the Harblyah Quarter their courses were f _ 
underground. 

An estimate of the respective sizes of the various 
canals which we have above enumerated may be 
gained by noticing which of these needed to be 
spanned by bridges (Kan(arah) of stone or brick 
at the points where they were crossed by the high- 
roads. By this criterion it becomes evident that 
the Nahr 'ls&, the §ar£t, and the Trench of T&hir, 
all three crossed by numerous bridges, were main r 
streams, and the same term may be applied to the , 
upper reach of the Karkhdyd. before it branched off 
among the numerous canals of Karkh. All the 
remaining canals — though each bore the title of 
Nahr (canal or river) — were mere watercourses, 
partly open and partly carried underground, but all 
of a size to be easily crossed on the level by the 
various thoroughfares, under which their waters 
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CHAPTER V 

THE KOFAH HIGHROAD AND THE KARKH SUBURB 

Square at Kufah Gate and various Fiefs. The Old Bridge and 
bifurcation of Muhawwal and Kufah Roads. Market of Abu-1-Ward : 
the Ibn Raghban and Anbarite Mosques. Pool of Zalzal. The Old 
Hospital and buildings on the 'Amud. The Karkh Suburb and Gate. 
The story of the Greek Envoy. The Fief of Rabi\ Warthal and 
Bayawari. The Gate of the Coppersmiths ; the Square of Suwayd 
and the Tuesday Market. 

In describing the suburbs which stretched beyond 
the gates of the City of Man§fir — which suburbs, 
after a brief lapse of time, through the levelling of 
the circular walls, became the western half of the 
metropolis of Baghdad — it will be found convenient 
to follow in turn the lines of the chief highroads 
which began at each of the four gates of the Round 
City. This is the method pursued by Ya'kAbf, 
and, taking him for guide, the present account 
begins at the Ktifah Gate, from which went the 
great southern highway, namely the Pilgrim-road 
to Mecca and Medina. Bearing next to the east- 
ward, and then north up the river bank, the 
description will follow of the various roads and 
suburbs lying respectively beyond the gates of 
Ba§rah and of Khur&sdn ; the quarters to the north 



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58 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

beyond the Syrian Gate will come next; from 
whence turning to the westward by the suburb 
of the Muhawwal Gate with its highroad, and then 
south, we come once more to our starting-point at 
the Ktifah Gate. 

In the accompanying plans it has been possible 
only to mark the main thoroughfares, and these 
though here, for the sake of clearness, drawn straight 
and broad, must certainly, in point of fact, have 
been both crooked and narrow, as any one who 
has visited an eastern city will know. Further, it 
is to be remarked that many of the original fiefs 
(Katfah) and palaces (Kasr or D&r), granted by 
Mansftr to his nobles, became in the lapse of time 
minor suburbs and quarters, which, still preserving 
the old name of the Kaft'ah, Ka§r or D4r (itself 
long fallen to ruin), came to be occupied by a 
congeries of small houses and narrow lanes. Thus 
for instance the Kasr Wadd&h, originally the palace 
of that noble, before many years have elapsed is 
found to be no longer his palace, but the general 
name of the quarter which, occupying the site of its 
courts, stretched for a considerable distance along 
both banks of the Abu ' Att&b or Razln Canal ; 
similarly the Fief of Rabf was in later times 
celebrated as one of the most populous quarters 
of the suburb of Karkh, the family of Rabf having 
presumably died out, and their inheritance here 
having passed into other hands. 

To one coming out of the Ktifah Gate of the 
Round City and facing south-west, there lay, 
fronting the gate, a square, from the further side 
of which started the great Kfifah highroad. After 
passing out from the gate, on the left-hand side 



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v.] The KUfah Highroad and Karkh Suburb 59 

of this square, towards the south-east, the land was 
occupied, originally, by the Fief of Musayyib, chief 
of the city police under the Caliph Manstir, and 
a mosque, 'with the tall minaret/ stood here close 
to the palace of Musayyib. Behind this came in 
succession a number of other fiefs, occupying the 
strip of ground going from the Kflfah to the Ba§rah 
Gate, along the line of the §ar&t Canal as it here 
converged to the wall of the Round City. In this 
space also, but lying nearer to the highroad of the 
Kfifah Gate, mention is made of the market called 
Sftk 'Abd-al-WShid, after its founder, also the 
Zuhayrlyah, or Rabad (suburb of) Zuhayr, probably 
so called after Zuhayr the father of both Musayyib 
(already mentioned) and Azhdr, who possessed fiefs 
in this neighbourhood. On the right-hand side of 
the square at the Kflfah Gate, towards the north- 
west, came first the fief of the Sharawl family, who 
had been the original gate-keepers in the time of 
Man?tir ; and behind this fief lay the palace of c Abd- 
al-Wahh&b in the suburb bearing the same name, 
its market street extending along the Little $arit, 
as will be described in a later chapter. Next to 
the fief of the Sharawf gate-keepers, and likewise 
on the right side of the square outside the KAfah 
Gate, stood the Diw&n-as-Sadakah — the Office 
of the Poor Tax — beside which was the fief of 
Muhdjir, its chief clerk during the reign of Man§tir. 
Beyond or facing this Diw&n was the so-called 
Kh&n-an-Naj&ib (the Dromedary House), with the 
house of the Overseer next to it, while on the 
nearer side stood the I?tabl-al-Mawl4 (the Freed- 
men's Stables). 

From the Square of the Kftfah Gatfe the high- 



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60 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

road led immediately to the Old Bridge crossing 
the Great $ar£t, as Ya'ktibl names this canal from 
below the point of junction of its upper reach with 
the waters of the Little $ar£t The Old Bridge 
(Al-Kantarah al-'Attkah) was a solid structure, with 
arches built of kiln-burnt bricks set in mortar, which 
according to Ya'ktibl came to be called ' old ' merely 
because it was the first piece of building executed 
by the Caliph Mansfir ; X a k ar *> on the other hand, 
states that the bridge was more ancient than this 
and dated from Persian times, which may indeed 
have been the case, since the Sassanian kings are 
credited with having dug the $ar4t Canal 1 . 

Shortly after crossing this bridge the road 
bifurcated. That to the right, westward, was the 
highroad of Muhawwal, leading ultimately to the 
township of that name, one league distant from 
Baghdad, and this road will be described later on. 
To the left at the bifurcation, and running almost 
straight south, the great Kflfah road turned off, 
leading to the gate of the Karkh Suburb, and 
traversing on its way the market called the Sflk 
of Abu-1-Ward. This market took its name from 
one of Man§ftr s nobles, to whom the fief here had 
been originally granted. He was at one time 
Chief Clerk of the Public Treasury (Bayt-al-Mfil), 
and during the reign of the Caliph Mahdi was 
Judge in the Court of Appeal and Superintendent 
of the Briefs. This market is described as having 
been well supplied with wares of all kinds, and 
beyond it eastward towards the river bank various^ 
fiefs are named. Here stood two mosques, ond 

1 Tabari, iii. 280 ; Ya'kubi, 243 ; Ibn Serapion, 24 ; Yakut, ii. 964 ; 
Hi. 194. 



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v.] The Kufah Highroad and Karkh Suburb 61 

named after a certain Ibn Raghbdn, the other 
called the mosque of the people of Anbir, who" 
originally were the scribes of the Dlwdn-al-Khardj 
(the Office of the Land Tax), and who lived with , 
their families in the streets round this mosque. 
We are told that the site of the neighbouring 
mosque of Ibn Raghbin had in ancient times been 
a dungheap, and it was named after Ibn Raghb&n, 
freedman of Hablb ibn Ma slam ah, who had been 
governor of these districts in the days of the 
Caliphs 'Othm&n and Mu'&wiyah. In later times 
the Ibn Raghbdn Mosque became celebrated for 
the assemblies of learned men which took place 
here. It must have stood at some distance to the 
eastward of the Abu-1-Ward market, and the fief of 
Rayas&nah occupied the land close to this mosque, 
at some distance beyond which was the Barley Gate, 
apparently not far from the river bank, as will be 
described on a later page. 

Through and across the Abu-1-Ward market 
passed the canal called the Nahr Abu \Att£b, the 
name given to the lower reach of the Nahr Raztn 
(the first branch canal, it will be remembered, from 
the KarkhdyA), and this ultimately joined the $ar£t 
below the New Bridge at the Basrah Gate of the 
Round City. On the course of the Abu 'Att&b 
Canal, and just beyond the market, came the pool 
called after Zalzal the lute-player, 'whose playing 
had passed to a proverb for its grace ; ' this Zalzal 
being the brother-in-law of the even more celebrated 
musician Ishak of Mosul, whose orchestra and choir 
of singers were the delight of the court of H&rfln- 
ar-Rashld. Zalzal dug the pool, and, at his death, 
left it to the people of Baghdad for the public use, 



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62 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

with a sufficient endowment to keep it in repair. 
It is said that in the days before Baghdad was built, 
a village called S&l, which had^at one time given 
its name to a suburb here, occupied the ground 
between where the pool was dug and the site of 
the Palace of Waddah, which lay beyond this to- 
wards the New Bridge, but after the time of the 
celebrated lute-player, this quarter took the name 
of the Birkat (or Pool of) Zalzal, and the name 
S41 fell completely into disuse \ 

Turning to the western side of the Ktifah highroad, 
the Nahr Raztn or Abu 'Att&b Canal, as described 
above, was the left branch at that bifurcation of the 
Karkh£y& which occurred immediately after this 
canal had passed under the Hospital Bridge — 
Kantarah-al-Blmdristdn. Here the right branch was 
considered the main channel of the Karkh&yfi, and 
locally was known as Al- Amfid, a name which in 
Arabic signifies 'the Trunk canal/ After flowing 
under the bridge, the canal passed beside the build- 
ings of the (old) Hospital, the prototype in early 
Baghdad of the great Blmiristdn, or M&ristfin 2 of 
'Adud-ad-Dawlah, which the Buyid prince (half a 
century later than the time of Ibn Serapion) built 
on the Tigris bank. This older Blmdristin is 
presumably the institution where the celebrated 
Rhazes — as westerns called the Physician Muham- 
mad ibn Zakarlyi-ar-Rizf — gave his lectures, thus 
founding the Baghdad medical school. Rhazes 
died in 320 (a.d. 932), and half a century later the 

1 Yalcubi, 244, 245 ; Ibn Serapion, 25 ; Ibn Kutaybah, 299 ; Khatib, 
folios 82 b, 84 a; Yakut, i. 592 ; ii. 795 ; iii. 201 ; iv. 142, 524. 

1 This last is the shortened Arabic form of the Persian word, which 
means ' a place for the sick.' For Rhazes see Abu-1-Faraj, 274. 



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v.] The KUfah Highroad and Karkh Suburb 63 

'Adudi Hospital (above named) was built, where 
the work he had begun was ably continued. Below 
the (old) Hospital the Karkh&yd or 'Amftd Canal, 
before it again bifurcated at the Clothes-merchants' 
Market to form the Nahr Bazz&zfn, had, upon 
one or other of its banks, the following places, 
of which however nothing but the names are 
known : — first, Ad-Darr£b&t, meaning f the house of 
the female musicians/ standing next to which was 
the mill of a certain Abu-1-Kasim : then came the 
place or street inhabited by the men of W&sit, and 
lastly a building called Al-Khafkah, meaning 'the 
•Clappers/ from some craft or trade (possibly con- 
nected with cloth-fulling) which was carried on here 
upon the bank of the stream. 

Ibn Serapion tells us that it was from the * Amfld 
section of the Karkhayfi that all the canals were 
taken which ran through the quarters of the inner 
Karkh suburb ; while Outer Karkh was the quarter 
traversed by the various ramifications which started 
from the lower reach of the Karkh&yA Canal. At 
the southern end of the market of Abu-1-Ward, and 
on the Bazz&ztn Canal which branched from the 
'Amfld, stood the gate called the B&b-al-Karkh, 
opening into this great suburb. It would appear 
that Karkh, as a separate township, had existed 
before the times of Islam, and the Persian writer 
Hamd- Allah asserts that it was founded by the 
Sassanian king Sh&pflr II, surnamed by the Arabs 
Dhu-1-Aktif, who reigned from a.d. 309 to 379 l . 

1 Nuzhat, 146. According to Yakut (iv. 252) Karkh is a Nabathaean, 
as we should say an Aramaean or Syriac word, derived from a verb in 
that language, meaning 'to collect water in any place'; and Yakut 
adds that the word was still in use among the Aramaean population of 



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64 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Be this as it may, Moslem Karkh, the great suburb 
when planned by the Caliph Man?flr, occupied those 
lands to the southward of the Kfifah and Ba?rah 
Gates, which were included between the SarAt Canal 
and the Nahr 'ls4. Before the century had elapsed, 
however, Karkh began to overpass the limit of the 
'I si Canal, and by the time of H&rtin-ar-Rashld this 
suburb extended far to the southward of the great 
canal, covering ground along both sides the Kfifah 
highroad for a considerable distance out from 
Baghdad. Thus Ya ktibl says that Karkh measured 
two leagues in length, the upper limit being at 
the Palace of Waddili. outside the Basrah Gate, 
and the lower at the Tuesday Market ; while in its 
breadth Karkh measured a league across, reckoning 
from the Tigris bank on the east to the Fief of 
Rabf on the west, this last lying immediately on 
the right hand of one coming down the Kflfah high- 
road, after passing through the B&b-al-Karkh. After 
describing the extent of Karkh, Ya'ktibt, the con- 
temporary of its prime, then continues : l Here every 
merchant, and each merchandise, had an appointed 
street : and there were rows of shops, and of booths, 
and of courts, in each of those streets ; but men of 
one business were not mixed up with those of another, 
nor one merchandise with merchandise of another 
sort. Goods of a kind were only sold with their 
kind, and men of one trade were not to be found 
except with their fellows of the same craft. Thus 
each market was kept single, and the merchants 

Mesopotamia in his day. The name of Karkh appears in Syriac 
under the form Karka ; and the name of the Karkhayi Canal, which 
traversed it, is the Syriac form of the corresponding relative noun or 
adjective. See Frankel, p. xx ; Hoffmann, p. 43. 



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v.] The Kufah Highroad and Karkh Suburb 65 

were divided according to their merchandise, each 
craftsman being separated from others not of his 
own class/ 

Karkh, which thus before long became the great 
commercial centre of Western Baghdad, though 
founded by Man§dr, was an afterthought on the 
part of the Caliph, no such suburb being included 
in his original plan of the Round City. As already 
described, the markets had been at first placed 
within the city walls, in the arcades which radiated 
from each of the four gates of the inner wall to 
the outer gates of Ktifah, Basrah, Khurdsdn, and 
Syria (see above, p. 26). The cause of the removal 
of the markets from the arcades is thus related by 
Tabarl (and he has been copied by many later 
authorities) : The Emperor of the Greeks had sent 
one of his Patricians on an embassy to Man§flr, 
and before the envoy was dismissed back to Con- 
stantinople, the Caliph ordered his chamberlain 
Rabf to conduct the Greek over his new capital, 
namely the Round City, then recently completed 
So the envoy was shown over all die new buildings 
and palaces, and was taken up on the tops of the 
walls and into the domes above the gateways. At 
the farewell audience, the Caliph inquired what the 
Greek had thought of the new city, and he received 
these words in reply: * Verily (said the envoy), I 
have seen handsome buildings, but I have also 
seen that thy enemies, O Caliph, are with thee, 
within thy city.' For explanation he added that 
the markets within the city walls, being always full 
of foreign merchants, would become a source of 
danger, since these foreigners would not only act 
as spies for carrying information to the enemy, but 



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66 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

also, being domiciled in the markets, they would have 
it in their power traitorously to open the city gates 
at night to their friends outside. Pondering over 
this answer, the Caliph Mansfir — as the chronicle 
says — ordered the markets to be removed to form 
suburbs outside the various gates : and in Karkh 
the new market street, as originally laid out, along 
the main thoroughfare measured 40 ells or 20 yards 
in width. 

From the time of Man?£lr onwards this great 
market suburb continually increased in extent, and 
a great fire which occurred here about a century 
after its foundation, during the reign of the Caliph 
Wdthik (then residing at S£marr&), was not allowed 
to become a permanent damage, for Karkh was 
promptly rebuilt, the Caliph contributing, it is re- 
ported, a million dirhams (some ,£40,000) from his 
private purse towards the expenses of laying out 
the new roadways. After the building of Karkh 
and of the other suburbs of Western Baghdad, — 
but more especially as a consequence of the rise 
of the new quarters on the eastern river bank, to 
which the seat of government before the close of 
the third century (the ninth a.d.) came to be trans- 
ferred, — the old City of Mansfir fell more and more 
to decay, and before long all the business still left in 
Western Baghdad had come to centre in Karkh. 
Extending a mile and more along the pilgrim high- 
road, Karkh retained a considerable population even 
after the remainder of West Baghdad had become 
a complete ruin ; indeed, it finally appears to have 
given its name to the whole of the region which 
continued to be habitable of this western side, for 
down to the present day Karchiaka is what the 



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v.] The Kufah Highroad and Karkh Suburb 67 

Turks call the more ancient quarter of Baghdad, 
namely that which stands on the Arab side of the 
Tigris. 

Within the limits of Karkh (as laid out in the 
time of Man§ilr) was the Fief of Rabf, a plot of 
ground which had been granted to the favourite 
chamberlain of the Caliph, and who, as just described, 
had been commissioned to show the Greek envoy 
over the new capital. The original fief must have 
been of considerable extent, for it occupied all the 
land near the Bazz&ztn and Daj&j Canals, and it 
extended from the line of the Ktifah highroad 
westward as far as the Karkhiyi Canal. It is stated 
that the whole of this tract had, in former days, been 
taken up by the arable lands of the ancient village 
of Baydwart (or Ban&warl), which had stood here 
before Baghdad was founded ; while more to the 
southward, and nearer the Tigris bank, had been 
the lands of another ancient village of this neigh- 
bourhood called Warth&l (or Warthali, according to 
the spelling given by Khatlb), which were afterwards 
occupied in part by the Rabf Fief, and in part taken 
up by the road of the subsequent market called the 
Suwaykah Ghdlib. When Mukaddasi wrote in the 
y ear 375 ( A -D- 985), the Fief of Rabf is mentioned 
as being already the most populous part of Karkh, 
and even before a hundred years had elapsed since 
the date of the foundation of the city, the fief had 
become completely built over by the houses of the 
merchants. This suburb afterwards came to be 
divided into the Inner and the Outer Fief of Rabt'; 
and the Inner, it is said, had originally alone been 
granted by Mansflr to his chamberlain, while the 
Outer Fief dated from a grant made by the Caliph 

f 2 



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68 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

Mahdl to Fadl the son of Rabf, who served Mahdl 
for a time as his Waztr. 

Immediately after passing the Karkh Gate and 
entering the quarter, the highroad came to another 
gate called the B&b-an-Nakhkh&stn, or Nahh£sin (for 
the MSS. vary), signifying either the gate of the 
slavedealers, or of the coppersmiths, and a square 
lay beyond this, called the Rahbah Suwayd, 
after one of the freedmen of Man?tir, who had 
granted him a fief here. From this point onward 
the market streets followed one after the other, 
bordering the roadway on either hand, as far as the 
utmost limit of Karkh beyond and to the south of 
the 'fsfi Canal, where the great suburb at length 
came to an end in the district known as the Stik- 
ath-Thal&th&, or the Tuesday Market of West 
Baghdad \ 

1 Ibn Serapion, 25 ; Mukaddasi, 120; Yalcubi, 245, 246; Kitab-al- 
'Uyun, 265; Tabari, iii. 279, 323; Yakut, iv. 142, 245, 254, 919. 
Khatib, folio 83 a, where the MSS. give Baniwart, Nabawan, and 
other readings. See also Guzidah, under the reign of Caliph Wathik, 
for the fire in Karkh. 



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CHAPTER VI 



THE CANALS OF KARKH 



The Karkhaya and the Rufayl Canal. The 'tsa Canal and its 
Bridges. The Butchers' and the Poulterers , Markets. The Bazzazfn 
and Dajaj Canals, with the Quarters of the Soap-boilers and others. 
The Fief and Canal of Dogs. The Shunfxiyah Cemetery and its 
shrines ; the Tuthah Suburb. 

A summary account of the canals which traversed 
Karkh has already been given in chapter iv. It 
will be remembered that the Karkh&y& — from which 
these were derived — was a great loop-canal taken 
from the Nahr 'Isd, a short distance below Muhawwal 
Town, which in part discharged its waters back into 
the c ls& Canal by the two streams of the Nahr-al- 
Kil&b and the Nahr f &bik. A moiety of the waters 
of the Karkh&yi, however, were carried off above 
this to the Tigris, either directly by the two channels 
of the Bazz&zln and Daj&j Canals, or indirectly, by 
the Nahr Razln (otherwise the Canal of Abu \Attfib), 
which joining the §arit, poured its waters into the 
Tigris at a point above the mouths of the Bazz&zfn 
and DajSj Canals. 

The Karkh&yi Canal is said to have been dug at 
the time of the foundation of Baghdad by *ls4 (the 
uncle of the Caliph Manstir), he being then occupied 
in building the famous mills at the junction of the 



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70 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Great $arfit and the Little $ar&t, which will be 
described in the sequel. 

The Karkh&yfi, below the Hospital Bridge (as 
already said), was divided up into many channels, 
and further we have seen that while in its upper, 
single course, the Karkh&yd was a broad canal that 
needed to be crossed by arched stone bridges (Kan- 
tarah), the lower branch canals, with the channels of 
the 'Amfld and the Tfibik (as the Karkh&yd below 
the Hospital Bridge came to be called), were evidently 
much smaller watercourses, since no such bridges 
were needed for the highroads to cross them. This 
will perhaps explain why, before many centuries had 
elapsed, most of these lower channels had fallen into 
disuse, for being shallow they had easily become 
silted up. At the time when Yiktit wrote, namely 
in the early part of the seventh century (the thir- 
teenth a.d.), it is indeed asserted that no one then 
could point out what had been the course originally 
followed by the Karkh&yS. Canal ; this statement, 
however, the epitomist of Y£kftt (the author of the 
Mar&sid) denies, for writing a century later than 
Y&ktit, he affirms that the course of the old canal 
still existed in his day, and that water flowed along 
it, which was used for the irrigation of the neighbour- 
ing fields. What, indeed, had by this date — a.h. 700 
(a.d. 1300) — for the most part disappeared, were the 
lower ramifications which in the earlier times had 
traversed Karkh, as also the branch canal that had 
formerly crossed the §ar&t by the Old Bridge, and 
flowed through the Harblyah beyond, to the north 
of the Syrian Gate , . 

1 Ibn Serapion, 24 to 26 ; Yakut, iv. 252 ; Marasid, ii. 485 ; and 
compare Plan, No. VII. 



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vi.] The Canals of Karkh 71 

The Nahr c ls&, the parent stream from which the 
§ar£t and the Karkh&yi were both derived, was 
one of the great navigable canals connecting the 
Euphrates with the Tigris, which (as has been 
noticed in a former chapter) dated from times long 
antecedent to Islam, having been dug by one of the 
Sassanian kings of Persia. It was by the Nahr c lsd 
that Baghdad received the produce of the west and 
provisions from the Euphrates lands. Great boats 
and barges were loaded at Rakkah, 'the port' (as 
it was called) of the Syrian desert on the Upper 
Euphrates, there taking over from the land-caravans 
the corn of Egypt and the merchandise from Damas- 
cus, and these boats coming down the great river, 
and then along the is& Canal, discharged their cargoes 
at the wharves on the Tigris banks at the Lower 
Harbour in Karkh. 

The chronicles relate that at the time of the first 
Arab conquest of Mesopotamia in the reign of the 
Caliph 'Omar, one of the canals in this district had re- 
ceived from the Moslems the name of the NahrRufayl, 
after a certain Persian noble who had turned Moslem. 
He, coming one day before'Omar in a robe of brocade 
that trailed on the ground, the Caliph inquired as to 
who was the little man ' in the trailing skirt ' (in 
Arabic Rufayl), and this nickname ever afterwards 
clinging to him, the canal which he had owned came 
likewise to be so called. This ancient Nahr Rufayl 
was, according to one account, the lower part of the 
c lsd Canal — namely from the Thorn Bridge down 
to the Lower Harbour — while, according to another 
version, it was the upper reach of the Karkh&y&. 
Whichever it may have been originally, the Nahr 
Rufayl in later days had come to be rather a poetical 



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72 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

name than one in common use, and it apparently fell 
into desuetude as early even as the time when 'Isft 
made the great navigable waterway that tookhis name. 
This Abbasid Prince f ls4 is stated by Ibn Serapion 
(our earliest authority) to have been the nephew of 
Man§(h\ being the son of MGs& his brother. Almost 
all other authorities, however, assert that this f ls4 
was the son of f Alt, grandfather of that Caliph; 
hence that it was the uncle of Man§ftr who redug 
the great canal. In the conflict of our authorities, 
it may perhaps be surmised that both *ls4s had 
a hand in the undertaking. Other buildings, how- 
ever, dating from the early days of the foundation of 
Baghdad and ascribed to Prince f ls&, all undoubtedly 
have reference to f ls& ibn f Alt, the uncle of Man§tir, 
who held the governorship first of Medina and next 
of Ba?rah, where he died during the Caliphate of 
Mahdl his grand-nephew. f fs& ibn MGsd, on the 
other hand, the nephew of Man§ftr, was in turn 
governor of Ahw&z and of Ktifah, and at one time 
he had been declared heir-apparent to the Caliphate. 
It will be remembered how, at the time when Man§ftr 
was engaged in the building of Baghdad, this c ts& 
was dispatched in command of the Abbasid forces 
against the two e Alid pretenders, Muhammad and 
Ibr&him — the grandsons of the Caliph Hasan — who 
had raised the standard of revolt f fs& ibn Mftsd 
defeated the rebels and returned in triumph ; but at a 
later date he was ousted from his rights to the succes- 
sion by Man§ftr, who proclaimed his own son, Mahdl, 
heir-apparent, and e f si ibn M(is& subsequently died 
at his governorship of Ktifah 1 . 

1 Yakut, iv. 117, 190, 839; Marasid, Hi. 247 ; Ibn Kutaybah, 190, 192. 
Of later authorities the only writer who states the digger of the great 



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vi.] The Canals of Karkh 73 

The 'IsA Canal left the Euphrates just below the 
town of Anb&r, and passing under the great arched 
bridge called Kantarah Dimmimd, flowed eastward 
till it came to the township of Muhawwal, which lay 
about a league distant from the suburbs of the Round 
City. It will be remembered that a short distance 
before the Nahr c ls& reached Muhawwal, the $ar&t 
Canal — which likewise dated from Sassanian times — 
branched from it to the left, while equally a short 
distance below Muhawwal the Karkh&y& (already 
described) flowed off also to the left hand. I§takhrl 
particularly notes that while barges could pass freely 
down the e ls& Canal all the way from the Euphrates 
to the Tigris, the $ar4t, on account of its weirs, dams, 
and water-wheels, was not navigable for large boats. 
The word Muhawwal signifies a place where bales 
are 'unloaded/ and the town appears to have received 
this name from the unloading of the river barges 
which took place here, when the cargoes were carried 
over to the small skiffs that plied on the $ar&t and 
Karkh&y& in the reaches between the weirs. Further, 
it would appear that the waters of the Karkh&y& and 
its subsidiary canals were kept, by these weirs, to a 
higher level than the stream that flowed down the 
§ar&t, for, as we have already seen, a branch from 
the Karkh&yi was carried across, above the §ar&t, 
by the arches of the Old Bridge, passing thence to 

canal to have been isa ibn Musa is Hamd- Allah, the Persian author 
of the eighth century (the fourteenth A.D.): he however in another 
passage speaks of the canal as that of 'Isa ibn Maryam, in other 
words, of Jesus son of Mary, this apparently being the popular 
Persian ascription of his time. Hamd- Allah is, of course, no authority 
in this matter, and he further makes a mistake in stating that this 
Musa (the father of isa) was uncle to the Caliph Mansur, he in fact 
having been his brother. See Nuzhat, 148, 164. 



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74 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the northward into the Harbtyah Quarter. It is 
especially mentioned by early writers that the waters 
of the Nahr c lsA never failed, nor was its channel 
liable to become silted up. They describe it as 
flowing in a fine stream through the midst of the 
city, reaching the Tigris at the Lower Harbour, 
which, as will be shown later, must have been situated 
immediately below the later, single, bridge of boats, 
the position of which very nearly corresponded with 
the present pontoon bridge of modern Baghdad 1 . 

On the line between Muhawwal Town and the 
Tigris bank, the waterway of the Nahr Tsi was 
crossed by ten arched bridges, the great Kftfah high- 
road probably passing over it by that known as the 
Thorn Bridge (Kantarah-ash-Shawk), which spanned 
the canal immediately above where the Nahr-al- 
Kil&b (or Dogs Canal from the Karkh£y&) flowed 
in. Below this there were five bridges across the 
c lsi Canal before it reached the Lower Harbour on 
the Tigris, and above the Thorn Bridge, four, the 
highest up being the Kantarah Y&sirtyah. This 
bridge took its name from the Y&sirlyah Quarter, 
which, as will be seen later, was reckoned the 
westernmost of Baghdad along the Muhawwal road; 
it was surrounded by fine gardens, and lay on the 
canal bank, one mile below the town of Muhawwal, 
and two miles (according to Yikdt) distant from 
Old Baghdad. The bridge below this was the Kan- 
tarah-az-Zayy&ttn, the Bridge of the Oil-merchants ; 



1 Compare Plan No. Ill with No. VII. In the sketch-plan of 
Baghdad given in my paper on Ibn Serapion (/. R. A. £., 1895, 
facing p. 275), the whole western quarter is put too low down in 
regard to the eastern ; and the course of the Nahr 'Isa should be as 
shown in the accompanying maps. 



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vi.] The Canals of Karkh 75 

the next was the Kantarah-al-Ushnin, the Alkali 
Bridge, the word Ushn&n being explained as the 
stuff used for washing clothes, and which was sold 
at the market adjacent to the bridge. 

The Kantarah-ash-Shawk (already mentioned) 
came next, at the Market of the Thorn-sellers, Shawk 
being the thorns used for kindling ovens and heating 
the Hammims or hot baths ; and near here lived the 
clothes-merchants and hucksters. Below this, on the 
canal, and therefore probably between the great 
Kflfah highroad and the river bank, came the Kan- 
tarah-ar-Rummfin, where pomegranates (from which 
it took its name) were sold ; then the Kantarah-al- 
Maghld — where the mills stood — near the spot called 
Maghld, meaning ' the place which lacks water/ and 
after this came the Garden Bridge, Kantarah-al- 
Bustdn. The two lowest bridges on the f fs& Canal 
were the Kantarah-al-Ma'badt and the Kantarah- 
Bani-Zurayk. The first of these took its name from 
a certain \Abd-Allah ibn Muhammad al Ma'badt 1 , 
who, possessing fiefs here, built for himself a palace 
(Ddr) and a mill, also this bridge over the great 
canal, these all being called after his name. When 
Al Ma'badt flourished is not stated, but it must have 
been in the early days of the Abbasids, before the 
reign of the Caliph Mu'tasim, since we learn that all 
his lands subsequently passed into the possession of 
the celebrated Muhammad- az-Zayy&t, who was 
Wazlr of that Caliph between the years 218 and 227 
(a.d. 833 to 842). The lowest of the bridges, and 
that over which must have passed the highroad 
coming down from the Ba§rah Gate, was called after 

1 This is almost certainly the right spelling : some MSS. give the 
reading Maidf, as is printed in the Marasid, iii. 249. 



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76 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the Bant Zurayk, a family of architects, of Persian 
origin, and this bridge was built of marble. 

The preceding enumeration of the ten bridges 
over the Nahr Ts& is taken from the description of 
this canal written by Ibn Serapion at the beginning 
of the fourth century (the tenth a.d.). Ydktit, who 
copies all this, adds that originally at each of these 
bridges a market had been held, but that in his day, 
namely at the beginning of the seventh century (the 
thirteenth a.d.), through the ruin of Karkh and the 
transference of its population in greater part to East 
Baghdad, all this region had come to be deserted, 
and of these ten bridges over the Nahr c ls4 only 
two then remained standing, namely that of the 
Oil -merchants (Kan$arah-az-Zayy&ttn) and the 
Garden Bridge (Kanfarah-al-BustAn), also known as 
the Bridge of the Traditionists (Kanfarah-al-Mu- 
haddithln). The author of the Mardsid, however, 
writing about the year 700 (a.d. 1300), and three- 
quarters of a century after Y&ktit, contradicts most 
of this statement, asserting that both the bridges 
which his predecessor mentions as still standing must 
have gone to ruin already long before his time, 
seeing that the only ones remaining when he (the 
author of the Mardsid) wrote were three : namely, 
the Y&sirlyah Bridge, lately rebuilt by a certain Sa'ld, 
the Thorn Bridge, and that of the Bant Zurayk — in 
other words the bridges crossed respectively by the 
two highroads southward, from the Ba§rah and the 
Kflfah Gates, and the uppermost bridge of all, where 
the Y&sirlyah road crossed the c ls& Canal, turning off 
due west from the Muhawwal highroad l . 

1 Ya'kubi, 250; Ibn Serapion, 14; Istakhri, 83; and Ibn Hawkal, 
164 ; Yakut, i. 284 ; iv. 191, 842, 843, 1002 ; Marasid, iii. 249, 25a 



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vi.] The Canals of Karkh 77 

Returning once more to the description of Karkh 
after this digression on its canals, it will be remem- 
bered that while Inner Karkh occupied the land 
between the §ar&t and e lsi Canals, Outer Karkh lay 
to the south of this last ; most of the bridges above 
named thus affording communication between Inner 
and Outer Karkh in the line of its breadth, while in 
its length Karkh extended along both sides of the 
great pilgrim highroad southward. The upper part 
of Karkh was inhabited by the Khuris&n merchants «=--- 
who traded in stuffs (Bazzdzln), and these gave their 
name to the first of the canals (the Nahr-al-Bazz4zln) 
which crossed Inner Karkh, flowing off from the 
Karkh£y&. Taken likewise from the Karkh4y& was 
the Nahr-ad-Daj&j (the Fowls' Canal), so called 
because the poulterers had their stalls on its banks ; 
and both the Bazz&ztn and DajAj Canals flowed out 
directly into the Tigris, their lower reaches passing 
through the Sharktyah or Eastern Suburb, which 
will be described presently. At the beginning of 
the fourth century (the tenth a.d.) when Ibn Serapion 
wrote, the Bazz&ztn Canal, near the Market of the 
Clothes-merchants, passed a street which ran to the 
westward of the Karkh Gate, and probably led into 
the Rabf Fief; this was called the Road of the 
Painter (Shiri e -al-Mu§awwir), and in it was the house 
(D&r) of Ka f b. Next to the Market of the Clothes- 
merchants, but lower down the canal, and probably 
to the eastward of the Karkh Gate, was the Market v 
of the Cobblers or of the Butchers (for the MS. of 
Ibn Serapion by the addition of the diacritical points, 
which are lacking, may read either Kharr&tin or 
Jazzarin), the latter being the more probable reading, 
since Khafib tells us that the Caliph Man?fir, when 



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78 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

laying out Karkh, set the butchers to dwell in the 
outermost part, * since they be shedders of blood, 
and have ever sharp iron in their hands,' and this 
would have been in early days the outer part of 
Karkh. Further down along the Bazz£zln Canal 
came the quarter of the soap-boilers ; and the various 
other markets on the lower canals doubtless here 
formed lines of streets, with shops on either hand, 
which led to one or other of the bridges (already 
mentioned) crossing the Nahr f fs& into Outer 
Karkh. 

On the section of the Karkh&yi, or "Amfld as it 
was here called, between the two canals of the 
Clothes-merchants and the Poulterers, opened the 
Quadrangle of the Oil -merchant (Murabba f at-az- 
Zayyit), this probably lying adjacent to the Oil- 
merchants' Bridge over the Nahr f lsA, already 
described. Below here the Poulterers' Canal turned 
off, and on its course to the Tigris traversed a number 
of other quarters and markets, namely those in- 
habited by the canal-diggers and the reed-weavers, 
beyond which lay the Street of the Pitch-workers and 
the Market of the Sellers of Cooked Meats, The 
Karkhiyi Canal meanwhile, after passing a place 
known by the curious name of the Mound of the 
Ass (Dawwirat-al-Himar), sent off its single branch 
to the right, called the Nahr-al-Kilib, or the Dogs' 
Canal, which flowed out directly into the Nahr c lsi, 
just below the Thorn Bridge. On the banks of the 
Dogs' Canal lay the Fief of the Dogs (Katf at-al- 
Kil&b), and it is said this was so named in jest by 
the Caliph Manstir, from the number of dogs that 
lived here 1 . 

1 Ibn Serapion, 26; Khatib, folios 76 a, 83 b. 



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vi.] The Canals of Karkh 79 

Across the c lsd Canal, immediately beyond the 
Thorn Bridge, came the cemetery called the Great 
Shflnlzlyah \ and lower down this probably occupied 
both banks of the Nahr f fs£, for it is spoken of as 
lying adjacent to the Kallfiyln and Tibik Canals; 
beyond was the suburb on the Nahr f fsfi, called 
At-Tftthah. In the thirteenth century a.d., Yiktit 
speaks of a Kh&nkah, or Sftfi convent, which existed 
here in his time, also the tomb, covered with blue 
tiles, of a well-known saint called Al- f Abb&dl, who 
had died in 547 (a.d. i 152). In the Persian history 
called the Guztdah, it is mentioned that in the time 
of the Caliph Mustad! (who reigned from 566 to 575, 
a.d. 1 1 70 to 1 1 80) one of his slave women, called 
Banafsah (Violet), who was renowned for her gene- 
rosity, had built, or restored, a bridge near the 
ShOnfzIyah Quarter (probably the Thorn Bridge), 
and founded this Kh&nkah or convent. The ceme- 
tery further possessed many other celebrated tombs, 
among the rest that of the Sftfl saint Sirrl, or Sarl-as- 
Sakatl (the dealer in old clothes), who died about the 
year 256 (a.d. 870), having been the disciple of 
Ma f rtif-al-Karkhi, whose shrine will be mentioned in 
a following chapter. 

In the thirteenth century a.d. (according to Y&ktit), 
At-Tflthah was still a populous suburb, though 
standing solitary like a village apart, opposite the 
Thorn Bridge. Ibn Khallikfin, who wrote in the 
same century, also speaks of the tomb of Sakatl 
as being in his day a conspicuous and well-known 
object standing close beside the grave of the cele- 
brated Sflfl ascetic Al-J unayd, who was the nephew 

1 The Lesser Shunizfyah, as will be mentioned below, was the name 
given to the cemetery lying round the Kagimayn Shrine. 



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80 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

of Sakafi on the sisters side. At the present time, 
however, all trace of these shrines has apparently 
vanished, though as late as the middle of the four- 
teenth century a.d., when Hamd-Allah wrote, the 
tombs of Junayd and of Sarl-as-Saka$t were still 
objects of veneration in Baghdad l . 

1 Yakut, i. 889 ; iii. 338, 599 ; iv. 843 ; Khatib, folio 113 a ; Guzidah, 
reign of Caliph Mustadf, and Nuzhat, 149; Ibn Khallikan, No. 255, 
p. 65. 



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CHAPTER VII 

THE QUARTERS OF THE LOWER HARBOUR 

The Tabik and Kallayfn Canals. Chickpea Broth. The Monastery 
of the Virgins. The Street of Kiln-burnt Bricks and the Cotton House. 
The Melon House, or Fruit Market, and the Myrtle Wharf. The 
Lower Harbour. The Palace of 'Isa and the Kasr *lsa Quarter. 
The later Bridge of Boats. The Kurayyah Quarter. The Highroad 
of the Basrah Gate. The Sharkfyah Quarter and the 'Atikah. The 
IJarrani Archway. The Palace and Fief of Waddalj. The Book- 
sellers' Market and the New Bridge. 

The KarkhfiyA Canal, after passing the place 
known as the Mound of the Ass, took the name 
of the Nahr T&bik (or T&bak), and began to curve 
round to the eastward and north-east in its final 
reach before flowing out into the c lsi Canal, not 
very far above where this last itself joined the 
Tigris. Before the Karkh£y&, however, changed 
its name to TAbik, a branch was taken from its left 
bank at a place known as the Quadrangle of $4lih. 
This branch or loop canal was the Nahr-al-Kalliyln,' 
so called from the shops of those who sold fried 
meats, and after passing a place named As-Saw- 
w&kin — from the sellers of parched-pea broth called 
Sawtk — the Kall&yin Canal flowed round to join the 
Poulterers' Canal (or Nahr DajAj, already described) 
in the quarter of the reed-weavers. 



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82 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

The Sawtk, from which the Saww&ktn took their 
name, forms the subject of a curious note by Khatlb. 
He relates that Sawlk-al-Himm&§ — a broth or ptisan 
of chickpeas — was about the year 360 (a.d. 970) 
sold in great quantities throughout the markets of 
Baghdad, a certain cookman making it after a 
special receipt, and giving it an uncommon name, 
though what the name was Khaftb had forgotten. 
This man, in the beginning of each year, was wont 
to import for the demands of his business the im- 
mense quantity of 280 Kurrs — a dry measure, each 
Kurr equivalent to six ass-loads — of the chickpeas 
called Himm&§, and at the close of the season he 
would have none left in store, so that for the next 
year a like quantity had to be obtained. This broth 
of parched peas was more especially the food eaten 
by the poor in Baghdad during the two or three 
months when no fresh fruit was to be obtained ; 
it was not, however, very savoury, and many could 
not stomach it In time the dish went completely 
out of fashion, and Khaftb remarks that in his day — 
about the year 450 (a.d. 1058) — the broth had come 
to be no longer in demand, so little so that, as he 
adds, 'were a single Maktik (half-bushel) of these 
chickpeas to be sought for now, in both East and 
West Baghdad, this small quantity could hardly be 
obtained.' 

One of the many churches of the Nestorians in 
Baghdad appears to have been situated near this 
market where the chickpea broth had been sold; 
for Yilcflt writes that in the space between the 
Nahr-ad-DajSj (the Poulterers' Canal) and the Nahr 
T&bik was the Katfat-an-Nasira (the Fief of the 
Christians), where stood the Monastery of the Virgins 



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vii.] The Quarters of the Lower Harbour 83 

(Dayr-al- e Adhfir£). It was, he reports, a magnificent 
shrine, and here the Christians in Baghdad were 
wont to celebrate the Holy Communion at the 
conclusion of the three days' Lesser Fast, called 
the Fast of the Virgins, which preceded their Great 
Fast, by which presumably Lent is to be understood 1 . 
The quarter of the Nahr-al-I£all&yln occupied 
part of the ground where, as has already been 
mentioned, in earlier days had stood the village 
of Warth&l ; and Y&kflt adds that in the seventh 
century (the thirteenth a.d.) this canal had by that"' 
date come to mark the southernmost limit of Karkh, 
so much had the great suburb then shrunk in extent 
from the six-mile length of when it had been first 
laid out The Nahr T&bik, as already explained, was 
the designation of the last reach of the Karkh&yi 
before it flowed out to the 'ts& Canal. The name 
is given by Tabart as the Nahr Tibik-al-Kisrawl 
(Tfibik of the Chosroes), being originally the canal 
of the Sassanian Pipak (or B&bak), son of Bahr&m, 
son of B&bak, who had first dug it and founded a 
palace 2 on the site where the Ka§r c lsi ibn "AH 
afterwards stood. Ya'kftbl, however, declares that 
the canal took its na,me from a certain Tibak-ibn- 
§amyah. Yikflt, who in part copies his predecessors, 
seems to imagine that this word Tibak or T&bik 
was merely a variant for B&bak ; but adds that in his 
opinion the name of the canal was really derived, 
not from a man, but from the great tiles called 
Tdbak made on its banks, which were in use through- 
out Baghdad for paving the houses. Since the year 

1 Yakut, ii. 680; iv. 143; Khatib, folio nob. 
* The word used is 'Akr, which Yakut (iii. 695) explains to mean 
' a castle (Kasr) to which the villagers may flee for safety.' 

G 2 



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84 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

488 (a.d. 1095), Y&ktit continues, the quarter of 
the T^bik Canal had become an area of rubbish 
mounds, the result of a conflagration following on 
the riots which had broken out between the people 
of this quarter — who were Sunnls — and those of the 
neighbouring B&b-al-Arh& (the Gate of the Mills), 
near the Maghld Bridge over the f lsd Canal, who 
were Shlahs. The same authority states that on 
the T&bik Canal were also two minor quarters, 
namely that of the Darb-al-Ajurr' (the Street of 
Kiln-burnt Bricks), which was a ruin at the time 
when Y&ktit wrote (thirteenth century a.d.), and the 
D&r-al-Kutn (the Cotton House), which is elsewhere 
spoken of as lying between the c fs4 Canal and 
Karkh K 

Near where the Tabik Canal joined the Nahr 

1 Ibn Serapion, 26; YaTcubi, 250; Tabari, iii. 280; Yakut, i. 58; 
"• 5^7) 523; iii. 486; iv. 254, 838, 841, 843; Marasid, iii. 249; Ibn-al- 
Athir, x. 162, gives the year of the insurrection as A.H. 487, and the 
Bab-al-Arja mentioned in this passage is apparently a mistake for 
Bab-al-Arhi, namely the quarter of the Gate of the Mills. 

The account which Yakut, iv. 255, gives of the relative positions of 
Karkh and the surrounding suburbs is in complete contradiction with 
all that is known from other sources, and inconsistent with many other 
passages in his own works. Hence either the MSS. are here corrupt 
■or he, writing from memory at Merv, had forgotten how the points of 
the compass lay. Thus he says that the Sarat Canal ran on the Kiblah 
or south-west side of Karkh, while the quarter of the Basrah Gate lay to 
the south-east. Further, he puts the quarter of the Nahr-al-Kallayin 
to the south of Karkh, and to the south-west of it (he says) was the 
quarter of the Muhawwal Gate ; while to the eastward of Karkh lay 
the boundaries of Baghdad and the other great quarters of the 
western city. Again, while in one passage (iv. 841) he states that 
the Tabik Canal lay to the east of the Kalliyin, in another article 
(iv. 843) the Tabik is described as flowing to the south of the 
Kallayin, having the Shuniziyah Cemetery on its western side. Some 
confusion evidently must have existed as to the relative positions of 
these canals, for Khatib states (folio 25 b of the Paris MS.) that he 
had been told on good authority, in 450 A.H., that the Nahr-al-Kallayin 
flowed out into the Tigris below the Fardah or Lower Harbour. 



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vii.] The Quarters of the Lower Harbour 85 

'ls4 was the building known as the Melon House 
(D4r-al-Baftlkh), a name commonly given to the 
town fruit-markets; and to this spot these mar-c 
kets, which had been kept within the Round City \ 
by the Caliph Man§tir, were finally removed during / 
the reign of MahdI. The actual point of junction S 
of the T&bik with the f ts& Canal was marked by" 
a p]ace known as the Myrtle Wharf (Mashraat- 
al-As), which doubtless formed the northern strand 
of the Fardah, or Lower Harbour, where the c lsi 
Canal disembogued into the Tigris. This, as already 
said, was the Port of Karkh, and in early days it 
lay in the very midst of West Baghdad, where (as 
Ibn Hawkal writes) the ships from the Euphrates 
were moored to discharge their cargoes, all along 
the harbour side standing the warehouses of the 
merchants, with many great markets near 1 . 

This Lower Harbour — as we have named it to 
distinguish it from the Upper Harbour at the mouth 
of the T&hir Trench — was known as the Fardah 
of Ja'far, son of the Caliph Mansfir, and to him his 
father had granted the lands here in fief. On its 
upper strand and near the Tigris bank was the v 
Ka§r f ls&, the palace that gave its name to the sur- 
rounding quarter, and which is commonly stated to 
have been built by that Abbasid prince c lsA (whether 
uncle or nephew of the Caliph Man§ftr is uncertain) 2 
who dug the f ls& Canal. By another account, how- 

1 Ibn Serapion, 28; Fakhri, 299; Ibn Hawkal, 165. I translate 
Mashrdah by 'wharf,' tentatively ; it may signify 'ford' or 'passage/ 
but in the modern dialect of Baghdad the cognate term Sharfah 
means 'wharf,' and is in frequent use (see Jones, 312) ; further, this 
signification appears to suit the context where the word Mashrdah 
occurs in Tabari and other early authorities. 

1 See above, p. 72. 



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86 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

ever, this Ka§r took its name from € fs&, son of 
Ja'far, after whom the harbour was called, hence 
a grandson of Man^flr ; and this *\sk is stated to 
have had a brother called Ja'far, after his father, 
and he had owned the neighbouring palace called 
the D£r Ja'far. On the other hand Ydktit, who 
quotes a long anecdote in illustration of the well- 
known avarice of the Caliph Man?6r, showing how 
he once tried to inveigle his kinsman into giving 
up his palace, states that it was built by Prince 'IsA, 
son of 'All (that is to say the uncle of the Caliph 
Man?6r), who Ydktit asserts dug the f ls4 Canal. 
This he adds was the first palace (Kasr) which any 
Abbasid prince built in Baghdad; and it stood on 
the upper strand of the Rufayl Canal, otherwise 
called the Nahr f fs&, where this last joined the 
Tigris, and on the further side this palace over- 
looked the river. It apparently had the good 
fortune to escape the destruction which overtook 
so many of the houses in this quarter during the 
two great sieges of Baghdad (in the reigns respec- 
tively of Amln and Musta'ln), for the Continuator 
of Tabarl mentions that the maternal uncle of the 
Caliph Muktadir, named Gharlb (or Ghurayb) — who 
died in 305 (a.d. 917) — was buried in the Kasr f fs£. 
Apparently lying opposite to this palace there was, 
at about the same period, an island in the Tigris 
stream, for in the year 313 (a. d. 925) the Wazlr 
of the Caliph Muktadir, Ahmad Ibn-al-Kha§lb, was 
molested by arrows shot at him while riding up to 
the Ka§r c Is4, by some insurgent troops who had 
landed on this island. 

As late as the beginning of the seventh century 
(the thirteenth a.d.), in the time of Ydkflt, the 



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vii.] The Quarters of the Lower Harbour 87 

populous suburb and markets known as the quarter 
of the Ka§r 'IsA still existed, though the palace 
itself had long since entirely disappeared. The 
quarter was celebrated for the mosque called the 
Jdmf of Ibn-al-Muftalib, and it was probably in 
the neighbourhood of this mosque that the tomb 
of the Caliph Mustadl, who died in 575 (a.d. 1180), 
had been erected. The Caliphs for the most part 
were buried at Ru§£fah (as will be described later) ; 
but the chronicle specially states that this Caliph 
was buried 'in a tomb apart outside the quarter 
of the Kasr € lsd in Western Baghdad.' 

From a topographical point of view, the Ka§r € lsi 
with its surrounding quarter, lying on the Tigris 
immediately above the harbour where the 'tsd Canal 
flowed out, is a position of much importance, for 
Ydktit informs us that the Bridge of Boats in his 
day, which crossed the Tigris to the palaces of the 
Caliphs, began * in front of the Ka§r *ls4 Quarter/ 
The precise epoch when this bridge was first laid 
down is not known, but it can only date, at the 
earliest, from the latter half of the fifth century (the 
eleventh a. d.), and the first notice of it occurs under 
the year 568 (a.d. i i 73), as will be shown in a later 
chapter. This bridge, the position of which Y&ktit 
describes, is the same of which Ibn Jubayr speaks, 
who visited Baghdad in 580 (a.d. 1184), as ly* n g 
immediately above the Kurayyah Quarter; and 
there seems no reason to doubt that in position it 
represents the Bridge of Boats of the present day. 
On the other hand, as will be seen in the sequel, 
it cannot be identified with any one of the three 
bridges (upper, main, or lower) which existed from 
the time of the Caliph Man§ftr till the middle of the 



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88 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

fourth century (the tenth a.d.), when the Buyid 
princes became masters of Baghdad, for the lowest 
of these must have crossed the Tigris considerably 
above the mouth of the harbour and to a point 
within, or above, the gate of the Tuesday Market 
in the wall of the Mukharrim Quarter of Eastern 
Baghdad 1 . 

On the south side of the harbour, and stretching 
from here for a considerable distance along the 
Tigris bank, was the quarter called AM£urayyah 
(the Little Village). This must have been one of the 
latest built of the outlying suburbs, for it is mentioned 
neither by Ibn Serapion nor by Ya'ktibl, and it 
probably only came into existence about the middle 
of the fifth century (the eleventh a. d.), during the 
earlier years of the Saljflk supremacy, when the 
suburbs of both East and West Baghdad were 
considerably enlarged, and the Nizdmiyah College 
came to be built on the eastern river bank, im- 
mediately opposite to the Kurayyah on the western 
side. Ibn Jubayr, who visited Baghdad in 580 
(a.d. 1 1 84), found the Kurayyah to be the largest 
of the quarters of West Baghdad. He lodged here 
on his first arrival, * in a district thereof that is called 
Al-Murabbaah (or the Quadrangle), lying on the 
bank of the Tigris, very near to the Bridge of Boats/ 
Y&ktit describes this same suburb in the year 623 
(a.d. 1226) as like a town apart, having its separate 
Friday mosque and numerous markets; while across 
the river opposite the Kurayyah was the wharf at 
the market of the Nizdmlyah College. The com- 

1 Tabari, iii. 280 ; f Arib, 69, 127 ; Ya kubi, 245, 250 ; Yakut, ii. 484 ; 
iv. 117, 839; Mushtarik, 350; Ibn Jubayr, 226; and compare Plan 
No. VII with No. III. 



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vii.] The Quarters of the Lower Harbour 89 

manding position of this suburb made it a point of 
importance when half a century later, in the year 
656 (a.d. 1258), the Mongols laid siege to Baghdad; 
and the chronicles state that Hfll&gti then ordered 
the chief part of his army that was sent across to 
besiege Baghdad from the west side to pitch their 
siege camp 'over against Al-Kurayyah, which lies 
opposite the palaces of the Caliphs/ This incident, 
however, will be more fully discussed at a later page, 
when we come to deal with the events of the last 
great siege. 

From another passage in Y&ktit it would further 
appear that the ICurayyah Quarter must also have 
stretched across and to the north of the 'IsA Canal 
along its left bank ; for part of the Kurayyah is de- 
scribed as occupying ground between the canal and 
the KufuftA suburb at the Ba?rah Gate, at the time 
when all these quarters suffered damage by a great 
inundation of the Tigris in the year 614 (a.d. 121 7) \ 

The Kurayyah was the lowest, downstream, of the 
suburbs of Karkh which lay on the Tigris bank, and 
it communicated directly with the City of Man§flr 
by the highroad of the Ba?rah Gate. In its lower 
portion this thoroughfare on leaving the Kurayyah 
passed, on the right, the quarter of the Ka§r c ls4 
(already described), immediately after crossing the 
€ ls£ Canal by the Bani Zurayk Bridge, and from 
the highroad at this point must have diverged the 

1 Ibn Jubayr, 226; Yakut, iv. 85, 137; Mushtarik, 344; Chronicle 
of Abu-1-Fida, iv. 552 ; Ibn-al-Athir, xii. 217. In the edition by 
W. Wright of Ibn Jubayr, the name of Al-Kurayyah is given without 
points and is misprinted. There can be no doubt, however, as to the 
true reading, for the passage is copied by Sharishi in his Commentary 
on Hariri, i. 216. For this reference I am indebted to Professor 
De Goeje. 



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J 



go Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

street to the (later) Bridge of Boats, mentioned by Ibn 
Jubayr and Y&kAt. Further up, and before reaching 
the Harrinl Arch, the Basrah Gate highroad skirted 
the quarter called the Sharklyah, which lay between 
it and the Tigris, immediately above the quarter 
of the Ka§r c ls& ; and part of the Sharklyah Quarter, 
namely that portion more immediately on the river 
bank, bore the name of an older suburb known as 
Al-'Atikah. 

The Sharklyah, meaning 'the Eastern Quarter' 
(and not to be confounded with Eastern Baghdad 
on the further side of the Tigris), was so called 
from its position to the eastward of the City of 
Manstir. Originally it had its special Friday mosque, 
and a K&dl or judge appointed to settle the dis- 
putes of the people in the Karkh markets ; but this 
Friday mosque was afterwards disestablished. The 
\Atlkah, meaning * the ancient ' suburb, is described 
as situated between the Harr&nt Arch and the 
Barley Gate, on the land contiguous to the river 
bank. It was also known as the Ancient Market 
(As-Sftk-al-'Atlkah), and before Baghdad was built 
a village had existed here that went by the name 
of Sfin&y&, the black grapes from its vineyards 
being very celebrated. In later times a shrine 
dedicated to the Caliph "All, and much frequented 
by the Shfahs, stood in this quarter, being known 
as the Mashhad-al-Mintakah (the Shrine of the 
Girdle), probably from some relic here preserved. 
The Shfahs asserted that 'All had prayed at this 
shrine, a fact mentioned as doubtful by Khaflb, and 
when Y&ktit wrote in the beginning of the seventh 
century (the thirteenth a. d.), this shrine had already 
disappeared. 



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vii.] The Quarters of the Lower Harbour 91 

The Sharklyah Quarter must have been traversed 
by the lower reaches of both the Bazzdztn and Daj&j 
Canals, already described. The latter of the two, 
after passing the Street of the Pitch-workers, flowed 
out to the Tigris among the Cookmen's Quarter ; 
while the Bazzdzln Canal had its exit immediately 
below the building known as the Nut-house (D&r- 
al-Jawz), after passing through the Soap-boilers 
Quarter \ 

On the highroad coming down from the Ba§rah 
Gate, the upper limit of the Sharklyah Quarter was 
at the archway of the Harr&nian (T£k-al-Harr£nl). 
This archway stood between the lowest part of the 
Abu- c Att&b Canal — immediately above where its 
waters flowed out into the §ar&t — and the lower 
reach of the Nahr Bazz&ztn, spanning the roadway 
where it crossed a plot of ground that had been 
included in the limits of the ancient village of 
Warth&l, which, as already mentioned, had existed 
here before Baghdad was founded. According to 
one authority the arch was built by a man of Harrin 
in Upper Mesopotamia, named Ibrihtm, son of 
Dhakwftn, once the freedman of the Caliph Mansflr, 
and who, becoming in later times a chief favourite 
of the Caliph Hfidl, had served him at the close 
of his short reign in the capacity of Wazlr. Ya'ktibt 
on the other hand states that the Harr&nian who 
built the archway, and had his fief here, was not 
Ibrihlm, but a certain \Amr ibn Sim'an 2 . 

Between the yarr&nl Archway and the New 
Bridge over the $arftt Canal at the Basrah Gate 

1 See Plan, No. II. 

2 Ya'kubi, 245 ; Khatib, folios 76 a, 84 b; Yakut, iii. 197, 279, 489, 
613 ; Marasid, ii. 70; Ibn Serapion, 25, 26. 



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92 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the highroad traversed the parcel of land originally 
granted in fief to Waddfth by the Caliph Man§ftr. 
Waddfih was a native of Anb&r and freedman of 
the Caliph ; he had been one of the superintendents 
appointed for the building of the Round City, and 
he was afterwards chief of the armoury. His palace, 
known as the Ka§r Wadd&h, with the adjoining 
mosque, at one time gave its name to this part 
of Karkh, of which great suburb, further, he drew 
the ground plan by order of the Caliph, being also 
made superintendent of the funds set apart for the 
building of the neighbouring Sharklyah Quarter. 
At a somewhat later date, this palace in the fief 
or suburb (Katl'ah or Rabad, as it was indifferently 
called) of Wadddh was, for a time, the residence 
of Mahdl, the heir-apparent, while the Caliph Mansftr, 
his father, was completing the Rusifah Quarter and 
the new Palace of Mahdl across the river. 

From the Harrfinl Archway up to the New Bridge 
over the §arit Canal both sides of the roadway 
were occupied by the shops of the papersellers and 
booksellers, whose market was in this quarter, as 
also on the bridge itself; and this market was 
called after them the Sflk-al-Warr&kln, more than 
one hundred booksellers' shops being found here. 

It is said that the New Bridge (Al-Kantarah al- 
Jadldah or Al-Hadlthah) took this name from the 
fact that it was the last of those built by the Caliph 
Man§flr over the §ar&t Canal; and Y&ktit, while 
remarking that in his day (thirteenth century a.d.) 
it was no longer entitled to its designation of new, 
Says that though it had been many times restored, 
it had now come to be a complete ruin. It must 
indeed have been rebuilt after the first siege 



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vii.] The Quarters of the Lower Harbour 93 

of Baghdad, that of the Caliph Amln in 198 (a.d. 
814), when both this New Bridge opposite the 
Ba§rah Gate and the Old Bridge (already described) 
higher up the Sar&t, at the foot of the square 
opposite the Ktifah Gate, were destroyed. On this 
occasion after occupying the Sharklyah Quarter and 
the line of the $ar&t Canal, T&H r > the general of 
Mamtin's troops, forced Amtn to retreat within the 
City of Man§fir, and stubborn fighting took place 
round the Palace of WadcUih, and again at the 
Karkh Gate, before the partisans of Amtn were 
finally driven in 1 . 

1 Ya'kubi, 245; Baladhuri, 295; Tabari, iii. 906; Yakut, iv. 123, 
188. 



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CHAPTER VIII 

THE QUARTER OF THE BASRAH GATE 

The Lower Bridge of Boats and the Barley Gate. The Palace of 
Humayd. The Kufufta Quarter and the Palace of 'Adud-ad-Din. 
The Tustariytn. Later Basrah Gate Quarter. The Shrine of Ma'ruf 
Karkht and the Old Monastery of the Sarat Point. The Convent of 
the Foxes. The Khuld Palace and the Karar. The Great 'Adudi 
Hospital The Review Ground and the Stables of the Caliph. 

The name of Sharklyah, to denote the suburb 
beyond the Basrah Gate, appears to have gone out 
of use during the course of the third century (the 
ninth a.d.); probably because this same name Shar- 
klyah, meaning the Eastern Quarter, had come more 
and more to be used exclusively for East Baghdad, 
across the Tigris, to which, after the return of the 
Caliphs from Sdmarrd in 279 (a.d. 892), the seat of 
government had finally been transferred. The area 
of this Sharktyah of the Basrah Gate was, in later 
times, occupied by the Quarter of the Tustarlyln, 
and that called Kufufti, within which also a part of 
the suburb of the Ka?r € ls4 was included ; for this 
latter suburb had originally gone all along the 
Tigris bank from the mouth of the c ts£ Canal to the 
mouth of the $ar£t, where it met the lower part of 
the gardens of the Khuld Palace. 



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The Quarter of the Basrah Gate 95 

At this point was moored the Lower Bridge of 
Boats, which from the time of Man§ftr till the middle 
of the fifth century (the eleventh a.d.) connected the 
quarters of West Baghdad outside the Ba?rah Gate 
with the Tuesday Market within, or above, the gate 
of that name in the city wall of the Mukharrim 
Quarter in East Baghdad. This bridge of boats, 
with others, will be more particularly noticed in a 
later chapter ; it is spoken of by Ya'ktibl under the 
name of the First (or Lowest) Bridge (Al-Jisr-al- 
Awwal), and near its western end must have stood 
the Barley Gate, and subsequently the Palace of 
yumayd. The exact position of the Barley Gate 
(Bdb-ash-Sha f lr) is not easy to fix, but it appears to 
have shut off the lower part of the branch road 
called the Darb-ash-Sha'lr (the Barley Street), lead- 
ing from the yarr&ni Archway to this Lower Bridge, 
which last is described as having been first moored 
across the Tigris by the Caliph Man§tir when he was 
building the Khuld Palace in the year 157 (a.d. 774) 
4 at the Barley Gate.' Further, it is stated that some 
of the markets were set. near this Barley Gate when 
these came to be removed from within the Round 
City to the suburbs of Karkh ; and the Rayas&nah 
Fief (as already mentioned) is described as lying 
between this gate and the Mosque of Ibn Raghb&n. 
The chronicles also frequently mention this Quarter 
of the B&b-ash-Sha'lr in connexion with Karkh, the 
Kall&ytn, and other neighbouring suburbs, as for 
example on the occasion of the insurrections which 
broke out and devastated the greater part of Western 
Baghdad in the years 406, 422, and 447 (a.d. 1015, 
1031, and 1055); and YAktit refers to the Barley 
Gate as standing ne3fr the 'Atlkah suburb (which has 



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96 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

been already described), near the Minfakah Mosque 
and not far from the Tik-al-Harr&nl, adding that in 
his time, at the beginning of the seventh century 
(the thirteenth a.d.), the gate might still be seen, 
standing solitary in the midst of the surrounding 
ruins. 

Another building which serves to fix the position 
of this Lower Bridge of Boats is the Palace of 
Humayd, which the chronicle speaks of as standing 
on the Tigris bank at the lower end of the semicircle 
of wall which was built to defend West Baghdad in 
the year 251 (a.d. 865), when the Caliph Musta'ln 
was about to be besieged by the troops sent against 
him by his rival the Caliph Mu'tazz from Simarrfi. 
This wall must have included the Lower Bridge of 
Boats in its circuit, and it formed the continuation 
of the wall round the three northern quarters of 
East Baghdad (as will be described later), which 
came down to the river at the gate of the Tuesday 
Market The Palace of Humayd had been built 
half a century before this date, receiving its name 
from a general of the time of the Caliph Mamtin, 
Humayd ibn 'Abd-al-Hamld, who died in 210 
(a.d. 825). He took a prominent part in suppressing 
the revolt of Ibrihlm, uncle of Mamfln, whom the 
Arab party had sought to establish as Caliph in 
Baghdad after the death of Amln ; and Humayd 
was for some time viceroy of 'Ir&k, being the friend 
and supporter of the Wazlr Hasan ibn Sahl, whose 
daughter Btir4n the Caliph Mamtin had married. 
Khatlb writes as though the Ka§r Humayd were 
still existing in his day (a.h. 450), and it must have 
stood on the Tigris bank, as is evident from the 
♦description of it in a panegyric on H umayd, written 



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vin.] The Quarter of the Basrah Gate 97 

by the poet 'All ibn Jabalah, in which he praises the 
beauty of the palace grounds lying on the river \ 

The KutuftA Quarter is frequently mentioned in 
the chronicle of Ibn-al-Athlr subsequent to the year 
512 (a.d. 1 1 18). In the sixth century (the twelfth 
a.d.) it is described as a great suburb with many 
markets ; from south to north it stretched from the 
'ls£ Canal, where its houses were coterminous with 
the upper part of the Kurayyah, to the Sar&t, near 
the cemetery, in which was the shrine of Ma'rtif 
Karkht ; while from west to east it extended from 
the highroad of the Ba?rah Gate down to the 
Tigris bank, being here rather less than one mile 
across. In the year 569 (a.d. 1174) f Adud-ad-Dtn, 
the Wazlr of the Caliph Mustadi, had his palace 
in the Kutuftd Quarter, and here he died in 573 
(a.d. i i 77), slain by the knife of a fanatic. In 601 
(a. d. 1 205) this quarter suffered much damage 
during the riots which broke out between its in- 
habitants and those of the neighbouring Kurayyah 
Quarter, and the great inundation of the Tigris 
in 614 (a.d. 121 7) completed the ruin of those 
streets and houses which the rioters had spared. 

The other quarter lying between the Basrah 
Gate and the Tigris was that of the Tustarlytn, 
namely of the people of Tustar, otherwise called 
Shustar, the celebrated town in Khtizist&n on the 
K£rfln River. The Baghdad quarter was so called, 
being inhabited by settlers from Khtizistin, who 



1 Ya'kubi, 245, 306; Tabari, iii. 324, 1551 ; Kitab-al-Aghani, xviii. 
106 (for this reference, which to a certain extent fixes the position of 
the Kasr Humayd, I am indebted to Professor De Goeje) ; Khatib, 
folios 71a, 75 a, 76 b, 80 b, 87 a, 107 a ; Ibn-al-Athir, ix. 184, 285 bis, 
422 ; Yakut, iii. 301, 613 ; Mushtarik, 274. 

BAGHDAD H 



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98 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

manufactured here the Tustarl stuffs for which their 
native city was celebrated. 

The ruin that had overtaken the Round City 
during the siege in the time of the Caliph Amtn 
was completed by the subsequent demolition of its 
circular walls, and the quarter of the Basrah Gate 
appears to have incorporated within its area most 
of the houses that still remained habitable of the 
old City of Manstir, its Great Mosque becoming 
more specially the Friday mosque of this quarter. 
When Ibn Jubayr visited Baghdad in 580 (a.d. i 184), 
he describes the quarter of the Ba§rah Gate as like 
a small city standing by itself, with the Mosque of 
Manstir, * a great Jfimi* and an ancient edifice very 
firmly built'; and this suburb of the Basrah Gate, 
traversed by the $ar£t Canal, was one of the four 
chief quarters into which West Baghdad had then 
come to be divided *. 

Between the Basrah Gate and the Tigris bank, 
and probably along the lower course of the $ar£t, 
lay the Cemetery of the Convent Gate (Makbarah 
Bdb-ad-Dayr), of which the most celebrated tomb 
was that of the Moslem saint Ma'rflf Karkhi. The 
position of this shrine is of importance topographically, 
since it is one of the few existing places in Western 
Baghdad dating from the days of the Caliphs, for 
Ma'rtif of Karkh has never ceased to be honoured 
by the people as one of the chief patron saints of 
Baghdad. The shrine and cemetery occupied the 
upper limit of the KufuftA Quarter, already described ; 

1 Ibn Jubayr, 227 ; Yakut, i. 850; iv. 137 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 383 ; xi. 
270, 296 ; xii. 133, 217. Kutufta is said by Yakut to be a foreign word. 
It is presumably the Aramaean or Syriac word 'Kafufta,' meaning 
' cut-off.' Cf. Frankel, p. xx. 



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viii.] The Quarter of the Basrah Gate 99 

but in regard to the exact situation of the original 
convent (Dayr), from which the cemetery took its 
name, Ydkfit confesses ignorance. It is not, how- 
ever (he writes), to be confounded with the Dayr- 
ath-Tha c £lib (the Convent of the Foxes), as has so 
often been done, for this last lay more than a mile 
distant from the shrine of Ma'rtif, and two miles 
from Baghdad. In the absence of more direct 
evidence, it may be conjectured that this Cemetery 
of the Dayr took its name from the ancient convent 
which had existed at the $ar£t Point (as the place 
was called where that canal disembogued to the 
Tigris) from times anterior to the building of Baghdad, 
and where, as the chronicles relate, the Caliph Mansftr 
temporarily took up his residence when he came to 
lay out the plan of his new capital. 

In regard to Ma'rtif, the son of Al-Firtiz&n, much 
is recorded, for he was the contemporary of H4rtin-ar- 
Rashld, and celebrated as ' the ascetic of his age and 
the Imdm of his time.' He died about the year 200 
(a.d. 816), and Khatlb names him as one of the four 
saints, the guardians of Baghdad, whose intercession 
will ever prevent the approach of evil to the City of 
Peace. He was by birth a Christian, but professed 
Islam at the hands of the Im£m c AH-ar-Rid&, whose 
freedman he became, and his merits were further 
perpetuated by the fame won by his great disciple 
Sarl-as-Sakati, the celebrated Sufi saint, whose tomb 
has already been mentioned as standing in the 
Shflnlzlyah Cemetery on the Ktifah highroad. The 
shrine which had originally been built over the grave 
of Ma'rAf was accidentally burnt in 459 (a.d. 1067), 
but was rebuilt by order of the Caliph Kfiim, under 
the superintendence of the $ftft Shaykh of Shaykhs 

h 2 



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ioo Bagdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Abu-Sa'd of Ntsh&ptir, and in 479 (a.d. 1086), when 
Mdlik Shfih, the Saljtik, and his Wazlr Niz&m-al- 
Mulk came to Baghdad, they visited this among 
other celebrated shrines of the capital. In 580 
(a.d. 1 1 84) the traveller Ibn Jubayr mentions the 
tomb of Ma'rfif, ' a man of righteousness, and one of 
the most celebrated of saints'; and in 611 (a.d. 1214) 
the younger son of the Caliph Ndsir, dying before his 
father, was buried near this shrine. Apparently on 
this occasion the tomb was rebuilt, for at the present 
day it still bears an inscription recording the year 
a.h. 612 as the date of its latest restoration. It 
evidently suffered but little during the Mongol siege 
(in a.d. 1258), for Ibn Batfifah, who visited Baghdad 
in a.d. 1327, speaks of the tomb of Ma'rAf of Karkh 
as standing in the quarter of the Ba§rah Gate, and 
a few years later, about 740 (a.d. 1339), Hamd-Allah 
also mentions it among the notable shrines of West 
Baghdad. There can be little doubt, therefore, that 
the present shrine of Ma'rtif covers the site of his 
tomb in the Convent Cemetery, where he was buried 
during the reign of H&rfin-ar-Rashld. 

In regard to the so-called tomb of Zubaydah, 
which is a large building standing at the present 
day a short distance to the south of this shrine of 
MaVfif, more will be said in the sequel, all that 
need be noted here is that there is no authority for 
this ever having been the tomb of the celebrated 
wife of H£r&n-ar-Rashtd, she having been buried in 
the Kizimayn, as will be mentioned in a subsequent 
chapter \ 

1 Khatib, 112 b, 113b; Yakut, ii. 650; iv. 137; Tabari, iii. 280; 
Ibn-Khallikan, No. 739 ; Ibn-al-Athir, vi. 225 ; x. 37, 103 ; xii. 201 ; 
Ibn Jubayr, 227 ; Ibn Batuta, ii. 107 ; Nuzhat, 149 ; Niebuhr, ii. 243 ; 
Rawlinson, EncycL Bri/. 9 s.v. Baghdad. 



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vni.] The Quarter of the Basrah Gate 101 

The course of the Sar&t Canal must have curved 
round through almost a semicircle, following the 
walls of the City of Man§dr ; but it is to be remarked 
that while at the Kflfah Gate this canal was separated 
from the wall by a considerable space (occupied by 
the square of the Kftfah Gate), at the Basrah Gate 
it ran close under the city wall, for this last gateway 
is described as opening immediately on the Sarit, 
overlooking it at the point crossed by the New 
Bridge. Kurn-as-Sar&t (the $ar&t Point) was the 
name given to the spit of land where the canal 
ran out to the Tigris, and here in Persian times had 
been held the market called Sftk Baghdad, where, 
as already stated, in the early days of the Caliph 
Abu Bakr, the Moslems had made their first suc- 
cessful raid into Mesopotamia. Near the $arfit 
Point also, later on, had stood the Christian convent 
where Man§dr sojourned when planning Baghdad, 
and this probably, as already mentioned, had given 
its name to the neighbouring cemetery. 

From the $ar&t Point upstream to the Main 
Bridge of Boats opposite the Khurisin Gate, a 
plot of ground nearly a mile in length but much 
less in width, lay between the wall of the Round 
City and the Tigris. Judging from the curve of 
the river and the quarter circle of the wall between 
the Ba§rah and the Khur&sin Gates, this piece of 
land was probably broader in its upper than in its 
lower part ; and it was occupied in the earlier period 
chiefly by the Palace of the Khuld and its gardens. 
The Kasr-al-Khuld (the Palace of Eternity) was so 
called from its gardens being supposed almost to 
rival those of Paradise mentioned in a verse of the 
Kur&n (xxv. 16), which speaks of * the Palace of 



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102 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Eternity which is promised to the God-fearing'; 
and it was built as already stated by the Caliph 
Man§(ir, who took up his abode here in the year 
158 (a.d. 775). The palace itself stood on the 
Tigris bank opposite the Khurisdn Gate and a 
short distance below the Main Bridge of Boats. 
According to one account, Man§tir chose this spot 
for his palace because the site was of all that neigh- 
bourhood the highest above the Tigris bed, and 
hence the place was almost free from the plague of 
gnats which swarmed elsewhere. It is also asserted 
by one of our authorities that the Christian Convent, 
where the Caliph had lodged, was near here, and 
not at the $ar&t point lower down, as is more 
generally said. 

Both Mansfir and Mahdt spent much of their 
time in the Khuld — though the latter usually 
preferred living in his own palace at Ru§4fah — but 
the Ka§r-al-Khuld is more especially connected with 
the memory of Hdrftn-ar-Rashtd, who kept his state 
here, enjoying its magnificent gardens, which, bor- 
dering on the river, gave easy access to the distant 
quarters of the city. After the death of the great 
Caliph, his son, the luckless Amtn (as has been 
already mentioned), entrenched himself in the Khuld 
and the neighbouring Round City, when outer Bagh- 
dad (East and West) was finally occupied by the 
armies of Mamtin : and from the palace wharf, called 
the Mashra'ah of the Khur&sAn Gate, he embarked, 
seeking to escape, but finding his death at the hands 
of Tihir. 

Below the Khuld, but some distance above the 
§ar&t Point, was another palace, called Al-Karar, 
a name signifying 'the stagnant waters/ or 'the 



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vin.] The Quarter of the Basrah Gate 103 

pool/ It is frequently mentioned in the accounts of 
this famous siege, and is the palace otherwise called 
the Ka?r of Zubaydah, being so named after the 
widow of H&rfkn-ar-Rashld, and the mother of Amln, 
who through all his disasters shared the fortunes of 
her favourite son. The palace was also known as 
the Ka§r Umm Ja'far, that being the surname of 
Zubaydah. Both the Khuld and the Kardr suffered 
so severely by the stones shot from the catapults 
which Tdhir had erected for bombarding Baghdad, 
that after the siege they appear to have been almost 
in a state of ruin, though according to one account, 
when Mamftn finally reached Baghdad in 203 (a. d. 
818), he at first held his court in the Khuld, while 
the Wazir Hasan Ibn Sahl was preparing the Flasani 
Palace (in East Baghdad) for his masters reception. 

The next Caliph Mu c ta§im, as history relates, 
removed the seat of government from Baghdad to 
Sdmarri, and during the sixty odd years that his 
successors made this latter city their capital, the 
Khuld must have fallen completely to ruin. When 
finally in 279 (a.d. 892) the Caliphate was re-estab- 
lished in Baghdad, Mu'tadid took up his residence 
in the palaces of the eastern bank, and the Khuld 
thus continued an unoccupied ruin till the year 368 
(a.d. 979), when the Buyid Prince f Adud-ad-Dawlah 
appropriated its site for the buildings of his great 
Blmiristdn or hospital 1 . 

The New Hospital of Western Baghdad is reported 
by Yiktit to have stood somewhat higher up the 
river bank than the spot where the Khuld had been, 
and this confirms the contemporary notice in Mu- 

1 Ibn Serapion, 24 ; Baladhuri, 246 ; Tabari, iii. 384, 848, 906, 954 ; 
Mas'udi, vi. 475, 477 ; Yakut, i. 807 ; ii. 459. 



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104 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

kaddasi, who, writing about the year 375 (a.d. 985), 
describes it as having been recently built by 'Adud- 
ad-Dawlah, close beside the Main Bridge of Boats, 
from which the Khuld had been separated by out- 
lying buildings. According to one account, the 
hospital was only completed in a. h. 371, a year before 
\Adud died. Nearly a century later, in the year 466 
(a.d. 1074), it suffered some damage at the time of 
a great inundation of the Tigris, when the waters 
are reported to have entered by its windows and 
the whole building was flooded. A like misfortune 
occurred in the year 554 (a.d. 1159), and again in 
569 (a. d. 1 1 74), when, during the spring-time, after 
forty days of ceaseless rain upstream in the Mosul 
district, the Tigris rose as it had never done before. 
On this occasion the whole of Baghdad was flooded 
and many houses fell in. The shutters of the windows 
in the Hospital had, it appears, been removed, and 
the flood rose so high that boats entered the building 
through the empty doorways and window-openings, 
floating about in the interior. The damage done by 
this inundation must, however, have been promptly 
repaired; for when, in 580 (a.d. 1184), Ibn Jubayr 
came to Baghdad, the great hospital was again in 
full working order. He describes it as an immense 
palace, situated on the Tigris bank, with many 
chambers and separate wards furnished like a royal 
abode. Every Monday and Thursday, he says, the 
city physicians attended there to visit patients, for 
whom both food and medicine were gratuitously 
prepared by servants especially appointed for this 
office. The building, he adds, was plentifully supplied 
with water from the river. 

This Hospital, further, in later times, gave its 



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viii.] The Quarter of the Basrah Gate 105 

name to the market, called Stik-al-M&rist&n, which, 
like a small city, was one of the great suburbs of 
West Baghdad, lying between the suburb of the 
Basrah Gate and the Sh&ri* Quarter, which will be 
described in the next chapter. With the lapse of 
time houses and streets had sprung up round the 
hospital buildings, occupying much of the ground 
where the gardens of the Khuld Palace had formerly 
been, and the district formed the populous Suburb 
of the Hospital, which is described by Y&kftt in the 
beginning of the thirteenth century a.d. 

When, in 656 (a. d. 1258), HftULgti besieged 
Baghdad, he made the Quarter of the Bim&rist&n 
'Adudi (as it was called) the upper point of his 
attack on the western side, and the hospital probably 
suffered much during the siege operations ; for, less 
than a hundred years after this time, when Ibn 
Batfttah visited Baghdad, in 730 (a.d. 1330), he 
found the place a complete ruin, and of its former 
buildings only traces of walls could be seen. It is 
probable, however, that though the houses remained 
standing, the hospital had been dismantled even 
before the Mongol siege, namely at some time 
prior to the year 630 (a.d. 1233), when the Caliph 
Mustansir (as will be described in a later chapter) 
founded his BlmiristAn of the Mustansiriyah College 
in East Baghdad 1 . 

Once more to return, however, to the Round City 
as this was left by its founder, the Caliph Man§ftr : 
we are told by Ya'kflbt that originally between the 
Khurdsdn Gate and the Main Bridge of Boats, where 

1 Mukaddasi, 120; Yakubi, 249; Ibn Khallikan, No. 543, p. 33; 
Abu-1-Faraj, 299, 474; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 62; xi. 164, 270; Ibn Jubayr, 
227 ; Rashid-ad-Din, 282 ; Ibn Batutah, ii. 107. 



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io6 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

the great highroad into Persia crossed the Tigris, 
lay the Review Ground, immediately adjacent to the 
Khuld Palace. Next to this were the Royal Stables ; 
and at the bridge-head itself there was again an 
open space or square flanked by the workshops of 
the bridge, and the Office of the Shurfah or chief 
of police. Beyond, to the left of this and upstream, 
came the quarter of the Sh&rf, which will be spoken 
of in the following chapter: but it will be understood 
that this review ground and the stables, with other 
buildings of the days of the Caliph Man§tir, must all 
have entirely disappeared long before the time when 
c Adud-ad-Dawlah began to build his hospital, their 
sites coming afterwards to be occupied by the 
markets and streets which formed the new quarter 
of the Blm&ristin. 



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CHAPTER IX 

THE ShArI* QUARTER AND THE TRENCH OF TAHIR 

The ShirT Quarter and Fiefs. The Baghfyin and Burjulaniyah 
Suburbs. The tfarbfyah Quarter and the Trench of Tahir. The 
Anbar Gate and Highroad : the Garden of Tahir. The Iron Gate. 
The Harb Gate. The Kafrabbul Gate. The Zubaydiyah Fief and its 
Mosque. The Straw Gate. The Zuhayriyah Suburb. The Bib-as- 
Saghir. The Han if ah Suburb and the Palace of 'Umarah. The 
Durtd Monastery and the Dayr-al-Kibab. The Jahirid Palace and 
its history. 

Upstream, running along the Tigris bank, between 
the Main Bridge of Boats and the Upper Bridge, 
lay the highroad (Ash-Shiri*) which gave its name 
to the adjacent quarter ; the Sh&ri c here forming 
the eastern boundary of the yarblyah, which was 
the great suburb stretching to the northward of the 
City of Man§£kr, and balancing the Karkh Quarter 
on the south. In the year 580 (a.d. 1184), when 
Ibn Jubayr visited Baghdad, the Harblyah having 
fallen in great part to ruin, the Shiri c had risen to 
be one of the four main quarters of West Baghdad ; 
but as originally laid out by Manstir, this consisted 
of the highroad only, which traversed a number of 
fiefs lying along the river bank. The first of these, 
near the Main Bridge, after passing the Offices of 



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io8 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the Bridge Works, was the fief of Prince Sulaymin, 
and next it came that of Prince $&lih, two sons 
of the Caliph Manstir. The street called Darb 
SulaymAn also took its name from the first of these 
princes — who, according to another account, died in 
199 (a. d. 815), and was the grandson of Manstir — 
his palace standing in the street immediately op- 
posite the bridge-head. Prince $ilih, whose fief 
came next, is known by the surname of Al-Maskin 
(the Poor Man), for unlike the other Abbasid 
princes he preferred piety and poverty to riches, 
and lived the saintly life of an ascetic. 

Many other fiefs followed these along the river 
bank, and the Sh&rf, or highway, before coming to 
the road which led off to the Upper Bridge of Boats, 
passed through the great fief or suburb known as 
that of the Baghlyln, who were the descendants 
of a certain Hafs ibn c Othmin, the Palace of Hafs, 
which ultimately passed to the T&hirids, standing 
in this district. The Baghfyfn Fief is described by 
Khatib as lying between the Darb Siw&r 1 (the 
Street of the Bracelet) and the Rabad or suburb 
of the Burjulinlyah — otherwise the Burjul&nlyin — 
so called from the people from Burjuldn, a village 
near W&sit, who had come to settle here. Beyond 
this, and further upstream, came the market which 
occupied the south side of the Fardah or Upper 
Harbour, where stood the Palace of the Tahirids 
in the midst of their fiefs. 

The Harblyah, the name given to the great 

quarter of the town lying west of the Shdri c and 

north of the Syrian Gate of the City of Mansflr, 

took its name from a certain Harb, son of *Abd- 

1 Pronunciation uncertain, as also the meaning here given. 



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ix.] ShdrC Quarter and Trench of Tdhir 109 

Allah, a native of Balkh, who became a favourite 
of the Caliph Man?ftr, and was by him made chief 
of the Baghdad Police. Later on Mansftr trans- 
ferred Harb to be Chief of Police in Mosul, when 
Ja c far, the son of the Caliph, was appointed to that 
governorship, and finally Harb was sent to Tiflis, 
in Georgia, where he met his death in the year 
147 (a.d. 764), at the hands of certain Turks who 
had rebelled in the neighbouring province of Darband 
on the Caspian. As described by Ya'kftbi towards 
the end of the third century (the ninth a.d.), the 
population of the Harbiyah Quarter was then chiefly v 
made up of Persian or Turk immigrants who had 
originally come to Baghdad in the train of the 
Abbasids, namely of people from the lands that 
are now generally known as Central Asia. Its 
broad markets and numerous streets were occu- 
pied by fiefs which Mansftr had originally granted 
to men from Balkh, Merv, and Bukhiri, to the 
countrymen of the Kibul-Shdh, and to people from V 
Khuw&rizm (Khiva) or from Sughd — and each 
company had been placed under its head man and 
captain \ 

In general terms the Harbiyah of West Baghdad 
(taken to include the Sh&ri c ) is described as lying 
opposite the Shammislyah Quarter of the eastern 
bank. The Harbiyah had thus the Tigris to the 
east of it, the Syrian Gate and the semicircle of the 
adjacent wall belonging to the City of Mansflr for 
its southern boundary, while the Trench of T&hir 
occupied the north side. The western boundary 
was formed by the great Anbdr highroad, beyond 

1 Ibn Jubayr, 227 ; Baladhuri, 295 ; Ya'kubi, 249, 258 ; Istakhri, 83 ; 
Yakut, i. 550; ii. 234, 563 ; Khatib, folio 80 b. 



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no Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

which lay the Little $ar&t, a minor canal (as already 
described), which flowed from the Trench of T&hir 
back into the Great $arit a short way above the 
Kftfah Gate. The Trench of T&hir must have 
carried a considerable body of water — to judge by 
the masonry bridges needed for the roads to cross 
it — and it will be remembered that the Trench was 
the left arm at the bifurcation of the Upper §arit, 
which occurred at a point less than one league down 
the course of this last, and at a distance of more 
than a mile above Baghdad. Not far from the point 
of its bifurcation the Trench, after throwing off the 
Little $arit to the right, curved up round the 
Harblyah, and finally flowed out into the Tigris 
at the Fardah or Upper Harbour 1 . By whom the 
Trench was first dug is not apparently recorded, but 
by its name it may be taken to have been the work 
of T&hir, the founder of the T&hirid dynasty, and 
general-in-chief of the army dispatched by Mam&n 
against his brother Amin. The Trench must already 
have been in existence at the time of this siege 
of Baghdad, of the year 198 (a.d. 814), for Tihir 
is then described as having his headquarter camp 
in a garden of the suburb beyond it. 

The positions of places in the Flarblyah Quarter 
can be approximately fixed by the courses of the 
three small canals — or water-conduits — which entered 
this suburb from the north-west across the Trench. 
Four gates here gave exit from the Harblyah to 
the Katrabbul district; and the highroads, passing 

1 Yakut (iii. 378) by an oversight states that the Khandak or 
Trench of Tahir falls into the Tigris ' before the Basrah Gate of the 
City of Mansur ' : he is evidently here thinking of the Sarat, and he 
has been duly corrected by his epitomist, the author of the Marasid 
(ii. 151). 



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ix.] Shar? Quarter and Trench of Tahir in 

out through these gates, crossed the Trench by 
arched bridges of masonry (Kantarah) which bore 
respectively the names of the gates. Taking these 
in their order down the course of the Trench, the 
first was the Anb&r gate and bridge, by which the 
highroad coming from the Syrian Gate of the Round 
City went out to the town of Anbir on the Euphrates, 
skirting the left or northern bank of the Sar&t 
Canal, and then along the Nahr c ls£. On the Trench 
outside the Anb&r Gate lay the garden where Tihir 
had fixed his headquarter camp during the great 
siege, and here mention is made of a second gate- 
way called the Garden Gate (Bib-al-Bustdn). The 
Anb£r Gate at the bridge is stated to have been 
set on fire by the people of Baghdad when T&hir 
stormed the Round City; and according to one 
account it was in the garden outside this gate that 
the unfortunate Caliph Amin was summarily put to 
death by T&hir, after the failure of his attempt 
to escape from Baghdad. According to the descrip- 
tion given by Ibn Serapion, a watercourse from the 
Nahr Bat&tiyS. crossed the Trench by the bridge at 
the Anbir Gate, and entering the Harblyah passed 
down the Street of the Anb&r Gate to the Street 
of the Ram, where its waters failed, as will be more 
particularly described in the next chapter. 

The next gate and bridge on the Trench was the 
B&b-al-Hadld (the Iron Gate) \ opening within the 
Harbiyah on the road of the Dujayl (Sh£ri c Dujayl). 
The second water-channel, from the Nahr BatatiyS. 
coming into Baghdad, passed down this road, but 
did not cross the Trench by the bridge at the Iron 

1 Often written in the MSS., in error, Bab-al-/tfdW, 'the New 
Gate.' 



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\. 



112 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Gate; for this watercourse had a separate bridge 
to itself, called the c Abb£rat-al-Ktikh (the Conduit 
at the Cabin or Reed-hut), which spanned the Trench 
between the Iron Gate and that of tiarb, the next 
below. The subsequent course of this, the Dujayl 
Road, Canal will enable us to plot out the positions 
of many buildings in the Harblyah existing at the 
time when Ibn Serapion wrote ; and, after follow- 
ing a sinuous course, its surplus waters ultimately 
joined the little canal of the Syrian Gate, which, it 
will be remembered, flowed up northward from the 
Razin Canal. In the account of the first siege 
of Baghdad the Iron Gate is celebrated for having 
served as the gibbet on which the head of the 
Caliph Amln was exposed to public view, before 
being dispatched by T&hir to Mamfln in Khurisin, 
as indubitable proof of the death of his rival. 

The next gate (and bridge) was that called the 
B£b Harb, which took its name from the founder 
of the Harblyah ; and the third water-channel from 
the Bat&fiy4, after crossing the Trench by this 
bridge, passed down the Street of the Harb Gate, 
and ultimately discharged its waters also into the 
canal of the Syrian Gate. This third watercourse, 
as will be seen later, is an important factor for 
plotting out the eastern side of the Harblyah Quarter, 
being connected by a branch transversely with the 
Dujayl Road Canal. Beyond the Harb Bridge, and 
on the northern side of the Trench, lay the Harb 
Cemetery, in which among other celebrated shrines 
was the tomb of the Im&m Ibn Hanbal. In later 
times, when the Harblyah Quarter had shrunk to 
a moiety of its former size, the small suburb which 
still kept the old name of the Harblyah, centered 



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ix.] Shari* Quarter and Trench of T&hir 113 

round the old Harb Gate, and, for the most part, 
lay only along the southern side of the Trench. 

The lowest of the gates on the Trench was the 
Bib Katrabbul, and its bridge was known as the 
Kanfarah Ruh& Umm Ja'far, namely the Bridge 
of the Mill of Umm Ja'far or Zubaydah, the wife of 
H&rtin-ar-Rashtd. Katrabbul, from which the gate 
took its name, as already stated, comprised the 
whole of the great district in which the upper part 
of Western Baghdad was situated ; and technically 
speaking this also included all the lands on the left 
or northern bank of the $ar4t Canal, so that both the 
site occupied by the City of Man?6r and the Har- 
blyah were within the Kafrabbul district. The 
Kajrabbul Gate, as is evident from the accounts 
of the second siege of Baghdad (in the time of 
the Caliph Musta'ln), must have stood at no great 
distance from the Tigris bank. Not far from it, but 
beyond the Trench, stood another gate known as the 
B&b-al-Kati'ah, or the Gate of the Fief. This fief 
had belonged to the Princess Zubaydah (whose mills 
near this have just been mentioned), and it was 
known indifferently either as the Zubaydlyah or as 
the Fief of Umm Ja'far. The more important 
moiety of the fief lay on the upper bank of the 
Trench, near where this last flowed out into the 
Tigris at the Upper Harbour, and the angle of land 
enclosed between the Tigris and the Trench was 
presumably shut off by a wall in which stood the 
Gate of the Fief. When originally granted, and 
possibly during later times also, the Zubaydlyah 
Fief extended some distance across the Trench to 
the southward, as is made evident from the descrip- 
tion given by Ibn Serapion, and it must then have 

BAGHDAD I 



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ii4 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch- 

curved down almost to the Tigris bank at the 
Baghlyln Fief below the T&hirid Palace, 

At the period of the second siege of Baghdad 
in the year 251 (a.d. 865), the great wall, which had 
been constructed in haste by order of the Caliph 
Musta'ln, began in West Baghdad at the river bank, 
close to the gate of the Zubaydah Fief, and in the 
accounts of the siege operations we learn that the 
chief camp of the army from S&marrA was pitched 
between this gate and the Bib Kafrabbul on the 
Trench. The bridge outside the Katrabbul Gate 
was the one on the Trench that withstood the 
longest the ruin which gradually overtook the whole 
of the Harblyah Quarter. When the author of the 
Mar£§id wrote, in about the year 700 (a.d. 1300), 
all the bridges and gates along the Trench, except 
this one, had completely disappeared. He states 
that he himself had seen the Bridge of Katrabbul, 
as it was then called, adding that it was only pulled 
down a short time after the beginning of the eighth 
century (the fourteenth a. d.), and that when he saw 
it the bridge had consisted of two great arches 
constructed of kiln-burnt bricks, which, after the 
demolition, it was found worth while to carry away 
to be used again in other buildings 1 . 

The land afterwards occupied by the Zubaydlyah 
Fief had originally been granted by the Caliph 
Man§(!!r to his son Ja'far (the same whom tfarb, 
the founder of the Harblyah, had served as Chief 
of Police when Ja'far was named Governor of Mosul), 
and from Ja'far the fief had passed to the Princess 
Zubaydah, who built herself a palace in the fief, 

1 Tabari, iii. 934, 1558, 1562; Ibn Serapion, 24, 27; Mas'udi, vi. 
482 ; Yakut, i. 460 ; Marasid, ii. 432. 



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ix.] Shar? Quarter and Trench of Tahir 115 

which last came to be known as the Katl'iyah or 
the Zubaydlyah Quarter, being chiefly inhabited by 
the servants and followers of the princess during 
the years when her power was at its height Later 
on the fief must have become the property of the 
reigning Caliph, for about a century after her time, 
in the year 306 (a.d. 918), the Zubaydlyah was 
occupied by the Caliph Muktadir, who bringing 
part of his tiarlm over to this side of the Tigris, 
temporarily established his residence here, the 
officials and his courtiers living in tents that were 
set up in the grounds of the fief. 

As already stated, the Zubaydlyah Fief must 
originally have occupied both sides of the Trench, 
but its .more important lands, in later times, lay on 
the north or left bank, coming down as far as 
the Tigris on the east, and stretching upstream to 
the gate leading out from the suburbs to the shrine 
of the K&zimayn, which was known as the B&b- 
at-Tibn \ or the Straw Gate. Canonically speaking 
this gate was the northern limit of Western Baghdad, 
for the doctors of the law held that the city proper 
occupied the land along the Tigris 'from the B£b- V 
at-Tibn to the $arfit Canal/ Karkh being ruled 
to form a suburb. The Zubaydlyah Fief became 
in later times a very populous quarter, and as such 
possessed its own Friday mosque. This, according 
to the account given by Khaflb, was first erected 
in the year 379 (a.d. 989), in consequence of a vision 
vouchsafed to a certain pious woman of this quarter. 

1 Tibn is the broken straw, reduced almost to powder, and used for 
fodder, which is left after the treading out of the corn ; it presents 
therefore a totally different appearance to our sheaf of long straw- 
stalks. 

I 2 



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V 



n6 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

She declared that in her dream she had seen the 
Prophet Muhammad praying in the little oratory 
which at this date stood in the fief, and that a 
celestial voice had foretold to her the day of her 
death. Subsequent miracles confirmed the authen- 
ticity of her statements, the mark of the Prophet's 
hand was found on the wall of the building, and the 
woman died at the date named by the voice. With 
the special permission of the reigning Caliph, T£i\ 
the little oratory was therefore rebuilt on an en- 
larged plan, an Im&m was appointed to conduct the 
Friday prayers, and the new J4mi c was counted as 
one of the chief congregational mosques of Baghdad 1 . 
Both the mosque and the adjacent Quarter of 
the Zubaydlyah must have fallen somewhat early 
into ruin, for by the year 700 (a.d. 1300), when the 
author of the Mar&sid wrote, this mosque had 
entirely disappeared, though he states that the ruins 
of the quarter might still be traced along the river 
bank in the upper part of the city. Twice during 
the preceding centuries this region had suffered 
severely from the inundations of the Tigris, and it 

1 Ibn-al-Athir (ir. 48), under the year 379, mentions the building 
of this mosque, which he names the Jami f -al-Katf ah. It is to be noted 
that in West Baghdad Al-KatVah, i the Fief,' always refers to the 
Zubaydlyah, while in Eastern Baghdad Al-KaiVah was more 
especially the 'Ajamf or Persian Fief. On the occasion of describing 
the Zubaydiyah, Yakut (iv. 141) mentions a second Kalliytn Canal — 
as of the Zubaydlyah— the name being identical with that of the better 
known stream in Karkh (see p. 81). The author of the Marasid, 
however (ii. 432), corrects the name to Nahr Kalldtin\ and this 
second Kalliytn Canal would seem to be a pure invention, on the 
part of Yakut, who misread the MS. of Khatib, where the name given 
is not Kalliytn, but K&fil&ytn, or some such name (compare the British 
Museum MS. of Khatib, folio 102 a, with the Paris MS., folio 34 b, 
for the reading of the MSS. vary). This last canal, if it really ever 
existed, was probably a minor offshoot of the Trench of Jihir. 



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ix.] Shari* Quarter and Trench ofTahir 117 

would further appear that by the changing of its 
bed (as will be mentioned when we come to speak 
of the disappearance of the so-called tomb of Ibn 
Hanbal) the river may ultimately have come to 
flow over part of the site of the former Fief of 
Zubaydah. Adjacent to the Zubaydlyah Quarter 
had been the Zuhayrlyah, with the Fiefs of the 
Mawlas or Freedmen of the Princess Zubaydah. 
This Zuhayrlyah (for there was another near the 
Kflfah Gate, as already mentioned on p. 59) was 
the fief of a certain Zuhayr ibn Muhammad of 
Abiward in Khur&s&n, and it stretched along the 
old wall of the Zubaydlyah between the Straw Gate 
(BAb-at-Tibn) and the Kafrabbul Gate. Into it 
had opened the B4b-a§-$aghlr (the Little Gate), but 
when Y&kflt wrote in 623 (a.d. 1226) both this gate 
and the fief of Zuhayr had long since disappeared, 
so that no one then knew what had been their exact 
positions. The great cemeteries beyond the Tibn 
and Harb Gates, with the adjacent Shrine of the 
K&zimayn, will be described in a following chapter, 
but occupying ground between these graveyards \ 
and the Zubaydlyah Quarter, in early times there 
had existed a suburb called the Rabad of Hanlfah, or 
of Abu Hanlfah (for the authorities differ as to the 
name), so named after one of the nobles of the court 
of Mansfir, who must not be confounded with the 
more celebrated Im&m, Abu Hanlfah. This suburb 
is described as having stretched from the Kuraysh 
Cemetery to the Tibn Gate and the T&hirid Harlm; 
and in it was the Palace (D4r) of 'Umfirah ibn 
Hamzah, freedman of the Caliph MansGr, the spot 
where his palace came to be built having of old 
been a garden planted, report said, by one of the 



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n8 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Persian kings who had reigned before the days 
of Islam. At the period when the Mar&sid was 
written, namely about the year 700 (a. d. 1300), 
all the houses here had already fallen to ruin, and 
the waste land was cultivated for cornfields, but 
in the earlier times of the Caliphate this region 
had been as densely populated as Karkh and the 
southern quarters of West Baghdad. 

To the north of the Zubaydlyah, and lying on the 
river bank opposite the Shammislyah Gate in East 
Baghdad, stood the great Christian monastery of 
Durtd, which is frequently mentioned in the earlier 
chronicles. It is described as having been at one 
time crowded with monks, and it possessed a stately 
well-built church. Near by was also another similar 
establishment called Dayr-al-Kibdb (the Monastery 
of the Cupolas), and in the year 334 (a.d. 946) the 
Durtd Monastery was a place of sufficient importance 
to have become for a time the residence of the 
Caliph Mustakfl, showing that it must have been a 
building of no inconsiderable extent. By the year 
700 (a.d. 1300), however, through the changes in 
the course of the river, both these monasteries had 
been swept away, no trace of them remaining when 
the author of the Mar&sid wrote his epitome of 

Yakat 1 . 

Partly enclosed by the older and lower part of 
the Zubaydlyah Fief, and standing on the southern 
bank of the Trench so as to overlook the Tigris 
and the Upper Harbour, was the great Palace of 

1 See Plan, No. Ill; Yalcubi, 250; Khatib, folios 67 a, 102 a, b; 
Baladhuri, 296; 'Arib, 71; Yakut, ii. 521, 565, 659, 685, 750, 964; 
iv. 132, 141, 142 ; Mushtarik, 200 ; Marasid, i. 429, 459 ; ii. 151, 432 ; 
Mas'udi, viii. 391. 



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ix.] Sharf Quarter and Trench of Tahir 119 

T&hir, already frequently mentioned, at one time 
general of the armies of Mamtin, and afterwards 
independent ruler of Khurdsdn, who bore the sur- 
name of Dhti-1-Yamtnayn or Ambidexter. This 
palace was one of the most notable buildings in 
West Baghdad, and during many years was the 
residence of the Governor of the City. Hence it 
came to be considered in a certain degree as a royal 
palace, and had the rights of sanctuary granted to 
it, where offenders might gain a safe refuge, and on 
this account was known as the Tdhirid tfarim or 
Precinct 

The X^hirid family was one of the most important 
of the semi-independent princely houses that rose 
to power under the shadow of the Caliphate in the 
third century (the ninth a.d.). The direct descen- 
dants of T&hir 'Ambidexter/ above mentioned, 
became independent rulers of Khur4s4n, and a 
cousin, Ishdk ibn Ibr&hlm, was made Governor of 
Baghdad during the reigns of W&thik and Muta- 
wakkil, when the seat of the Caliphate had been 
removed to SAmarrA. This Ishik had previously 
been Chief of Police under Mamtin, and he died in 
the year 235 (a.d. 850). Later on another member 
of the same house, Muhammad ibn c Abd- Allah, was 
Governor of Baghdad in 251 (a.d. 865), during the 
short reign of Musta'in, and it was he who organized 
the defence of the older capital during the second 
of its great sieges, when the Caliph Musta'ln, having 
fled from SdmarrA to Baghdad, was pursued thither, 
besieged, and finally deposed by the Turk body- 
guard who had espoused the cause of his cousin 
Mu'tazz. 

A generation later, at the time of the final return 



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V 



120 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of the Caliphs to Baghdad, in the reign of Mu'tadid, 
the T&hirid family having died out, their Harlm 
or palace became a secondary residence of the 
Caliphs — who by this date had already established 
their more permanent abode in the new palaces of 
East Baghdad — and Mu'tadid dying in 289 (a.d. 
902), his body was brought across the Tigris and 
buried in the celebrated Marble House (the Ddr-ar- 
Rikh&m) of the T&hirid Harlm. € AH Muktafl, the 
next Caliph, who died in 295 (a.d. 908), was likewise 
buried here, probably also Muktadir, his successor, 
who was slain in 320 (a.d. 932) at the Shammftsiyah 
Gate of East Baghdad by the bodyguard, when his 
corpse was left for a time unburied, till at last the 
people by night carried it away and gave it decent 
sepulture. During the next few years puppet Caliphs 
were set up and deposed, one after another, at 
the pleasure of the Captain of the Bodyguard, and 
the T&hirid Harlm became a state prison where the 
deposed Caliph and his probable successor in the 
Caliphate lived together side by side. Thus in 333 
(a.d. 944) Mustakft was brought from the T^hirid 
Palace to ascend the throne of Muttakl, who had 
been blinded and deposed; both Muttakl and the 
Caliph Kihir, who had suffered the fate of Muttakl 
in 322 (a.d. 934), remaining to end their days 
within the Harlm of T&hir, where they were buried 
with other members of their house. 

A couple of centuries later, in 530 (a.d. 1136), 
the T&hirid Harlm was plundered by the populace 
of Baghdad at the close of the two months' siege 
which the Caliph Man?fir R&shid suffered as the 
penalty for defying the power of the Saljtik Sultan 
Mas'tid. Much wealth is said then to have been 



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ix.] Shari Quarter and Trench of Tahir 121 

carried off from the great palace, and its devastation 
was before long completed by the inundation of the 
Tigris, which occurred in the year 614 (a.d. 121 7). 
Y&ktit, writing in 623 (a.d. 1226), states that the 
T&hirid Hartm in his day stood ruined and deserted 
amongst the remains of former houses and palaces. 
The adjacent quarter, however, was still in part 
inhabited, and a market was held in some of the 
streets, these forming as it were a separate town- 
ship which stood solitary, apart from the other 
quarters of West Baghdad, surrounded by its own 
wall \ 

1 Khatib, 87 b ; Mas'udi, viii. 212, 288, 351, 379, 383 ; Yakut, ii. 255, 
783; Ibn-al-Athir, ix. 26; xii. 217. 



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CHAPTER X 

THE HARBiYAH QUARTER 

Road to the Upper Bridge of Boats. The Canal of the Syrian 
Gate. The Slaves' House. The Harb Gate Road and the Suburb 
of Abu 'Awn. The later Harbiyah and its Mosque. The Quadrangles 
of Abu-l-'Abbas and Shabtb. The Dujayl Road. The Persian 
Quarters of the liarbiyah. The Abna and the Dihkans. The Abu-1- 
Jawn Bridge and the Market of the Syrian Gate. The three Arcades 
near the highroad to the Upper Bridge of Boats. The Syrian Gate, 
the Prison, and the Cemetery. The Garden of Kass and the Anbar 
Gate Road. The Quarter of the Lion and the Ram. The Shrine of 
Ibrahfm-al-Harbi. The Bukhariot Mosque and the Ramalfyah. 

Immediately below the T&hirid Harlm the Upper 
Bridge of Boats crossed the Tigris, to which led the 
highroad from the Syrian Gate of the City of Man§flr, 
passing through the Harbiyah Quarter diagonally. 
This great road to the Upper Bridge, Ya'ktibt at the 
close of the third century (the ninth a.d.) describes 
as having markets along its whole length, both to 
the right hand and the left, and from his contempo- 
rary, Ibn Serapion, we learn that a small canal ran 
more or less parallel with this road, in the space 
between it and the river bank, from the Syrian Gate 
to * the outskirt of the Zubaydlyah/ where its waters 
finally disappeared in irrigation channels. This is 



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The Harbiyah Quarter 123 

known as the Canal of the Syrian Gate, and as already 
mentioned, it was derived from the Razln Canal, at 
a point near where this last was crossed by the 
Kflfah highroad, being carried over the $ar&t by 
the Old Bridge, whence it flowed round outside the 
wall of the Round City from the Ktifah Gate, past 
the Syrian Gate, up to the Zubaydlyah Fief. This 
channel, it will be noticed, flowed from south to 
north (from the Old Bridge to near the western end 
of the Upper Bridge of Boats), and into it drained 
the two canals from the Batfifiyfi, which, as already 
described, entered the Piarblyah, the one by the 
road of the Harb Gate, and the other by the Dujayl 
highroad. 

Entering the Harbiyah Quarter from the Upper 
Bridge of Boats, and taking the highroad to the 
Syrian Gate, the Harlm of Tihir was on the right 
hand, while on the left lay the congeries of buildings 
called the Slaves House (D&r-ar-Raklk) 1 , to which 
the thoroughfare of the Sh&rT D&r-ar-Raklk went 
crosswise, coming past the Tihirid Harlm from the 
Katrabbul Bridge, this being the direct road from 
the Tibn Gate beyond the Trench. The Slaves' 
House had been originally used in the days of 
Man?6r as barracks for his domestic slaves, who 
were bought and imported from the Turk border- 
lands, to be placed on their arrival in Baghdad 
under the superintendence of his chamberlain Rabi'; 
and also near the Slaves' House Ya'ktibt mentions 
the fief where the pages (Ghulims) of the chamber- 
lain had their lodgings. In course of time the 

1 In the MSS. of Khatib this name is generally written Dar-ad- 
Dakik, which would mean 'the Flour House'; but from numerous 
passages in Yakubi and Yakut, this is evidently a clerical error. 



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sJ 



124 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

D&r-ar-Rakik gave its name to the surrounding 
suburb, and the name continued in use down to the 
seventh century (the thirteenth a. d.), for when 
Y&ktit wrote a market was still held in this quarter, 
though many of the neighbouring houses had then 
fallen to ruin. Further, it would appear that the 
portion of the Zubaydlyah Fief which lay on the 
south side of the Trench had come to be more 
commonly known by the name of the D&r-ar-Raklk, 
as early as the fifth century (the eleventh a. d.), when 
Khattb was living in Baghdad. 

Next to the quarter of the Slaves' House, and 
connected with it by the crossroad from the T^kid 
Harlm, was the fief of Abu € Awn, which Ya'kftbt 
describes as lying nearer the river bank and the 
quarter of the Sh&rf. The palace of Ibn Abu e Awn, 
son of the original owner of the fief, is stated by 
Ibn Serapion to have stood on the road named after 
him, along which passed the canal from the Harb 
Gate. The road of Ibn Abu 'Awn, therefore, would 
appear to have been a side street leading to this fief 
and turning off the highroad which went from the 
Upper Bridge to the Syrian Gate. This crossroad 
of Ibn Abu c Awn must further have been the con- 
tinuation of the road coming from the Harb Gate, 
down which the canal, above mentioned, passed, and 
the highroad from the Syrian Gate to the Upper 
Bridge of Boats appears to have crossed this Canal 
by the arched masonry bridge which Ya'ktibt speaks 
of as the Kan$arah-at-Tabbintn(the Straw-merchants' 
Bridge) 1 . Abu c Awn, from whom the fief and the 
subsequent suburb received their name, was a native 

1 YaTrabi, 248, 249; Ibn Serapion, 25, 27, 28; Yakut, ii. 750; iL 
231 ; Maraski, ii. 85 ; Khatib, 79 a, 103 a. 



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x.] The Harbtyah Quarter 125 

of Jurj&n in KhurdsAn, a freedman of the Caliph 
Man§Gr, and Ibn Abu 'Awn, his son, was twice 
Governor of Egypt, namely in the years 134 and 
138 (a.d. 751 and 755). In the following century 
another member of this family, Muhammad ibn 
Abu c Awn, commanded a body of troops in the 
service of the Caliph Musta'tn during the second 
siege of Baghdad, namely in the year 251 (a.d. 
865). 

The highroad from the Upper Bridge of Boats to 
the Syrian Gate of the Round City crossed diagonally 
the eastern part of the great northern suburb, the 
whole of which in early times had been known as the 
Harblyah. In later times, however, the name Har- 
btyah came to be used in a more restricted sense, and 
was applied solely to that part of the northern suburb 
lying immediately below the Harb Bridge, and which 
was traversed by the road of the Harb Gate. This 
quarter by the fourth century (the tenth a.d.) came 
to possess its own Friday mosque, which had originally 
been built for an oratory by one of the Abbasid 
princes during the Caliphate of Muff, who had had 
some scruple in allowing congregational prayers to 
be said here. It was, therefore, only in the reign of 
K&dir, namely in the month Rabl* II of the year 
383 (a.d. 993), that a decree was obtained erecting 
this minor mosque into a J Ami* (as a great mosque 
for the Friday prayers is termed) ; and Khajlb, 
writing in the following century, adds that he himself 
had frequently attended the Friday prayers here. 
When Y&fctit wrote in 623 (a.d. 1226), though many 
of the surrounding quarters had in greater part then 
fallen to ruin, the later Harbtyah, namely the suburb 
of the Harb Gate, remained a populous quarter, 



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126 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

shut in by its own wall, with the Friday mosque 
and many well supplied markets. It stood, he adds, 
4 like a township in the midst of the waste/ and 
a distance of almost two miles, covered by ruins, 
separated it from the quarter of the Ba?rah Gate, 
to which belonged the great Mosque of Man§Gr. 
In the previous century, when Ibn Jubayr visited 
the Harblyah, it is described as the highest up 
of the then inhabited quarters of West Baghdad, 
and beyond it there were only to be seen some 
villages that were considered as outside the city 
limits l . 

The Canal of the Harb Gate Road, as already 
stated, was crossed at the Straw-merchants' Bridge 
by the highroad going from the Upper Bridge of 
Boats to the Syrian Gate, and after passing the 
suburb of Abu 'Awn, this canal reached the two 
quadrangles (Murabba'ah) named respectively after 
Abu-l- c Abbfis and Shablb, through which it took its 
course before finally discharging its waters into the 
Canal of the Syrian Gate. Abu-l- c Abb4s of Ttis, or 
of Abiward (both well-known cities of Khur&s&n), 
after whom the first quadrangle took its name, was 
one of the nobles who attended the Caliph Man§tir ; 
and his quadrangle occupied land where, before the 
foundation of Baghdad, the ancient village of War- 
d&ntyah had stood. Shablb, a native of Marv-ar- 
Rfldh 2 , from whom the neighbouring quadrangle 
took its name, is variously given by our authorities 
as Ibn WAj or Ibn R£h (the latter name, however, 
is probably only a clerical error) ; he was a favourite 

1 Khatib, 102 b ; Yakut, il 234 ; Ibn Jubayr, 227. 
* A couple of hundred miles south of Great Merv, and on the upper 
stream of the Merv river. 



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x.] The Harblyah Quarter 127 

officer of Man§flr, and is known to history as the 
slayer of the too powerful general Abu Muslim — to 
whom the Abbasids had mainly owed their acces- 
sion to the Caliphate — Shablb thus giving his 
master a signal proof of devoted zeal for the 
new dynasty 1 . 

Another: thoroughfare, which ran parallel with the 
Harb Gate Road, went across the older Harblyah, 
coming down from the Iron Gate (B4b-al-Hadid). 
This was known as the Dujayl Road (Sh4ri c Dujayl), 
from the canal of that name which flowed along it, 
having crossed the T4hirid Trench by a small 
aqueduct known as the Conduit of the Cabin or Hut 
(\Abbfirat-al-Ktikh), which spanned the Trench near 
the Iron Gate on the side towards the Harb Gate. 
After passing for some distance down the Dujayl 
Road the watercourse reached the Quadrangle 
of the Persians (Murabba'at-al-Furs), where a branch 
canal went off to the place known as the Shops of 
the Persian Nobles (Dukk3n-al-Abn&) ; but whether 
this minor canal struck off to the right or to the left 
is not known, and before long it ran dry, having no 
exit from the quarter. The Harblyah, as has already 
been said, was originally for the most part settled by 
the Persian followers of the Abbasids, and both the 
places just named recall this fact The Persian 
Quadrangle is described as having been situated at 
no great distance from the Quadrangle of Abu-1- 
"Abbds, already described, and it was so called in 
memory of certain Persians, to whom the Caliph 
Man§(ir had here granted fiefs. The quarter round 
it was known as the Suburb of the Persians (Rabad- 

1 Yakut, Hi. 489; iv. 485; Khatib, folio 79 a, b; Baladhuri, 296; 
Ibn-al-Athir, v. 363. 



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128 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

al-Furs), and adjacent thereto was the Khuw&riz- 
mlyah Suburb, where the troops from Khuw&rizm 
(the modern Khiva) had been settled by Man§£kr, 
while the quarter of the men of Merv (called Al- 
Mar&wizah) lay next to this. 

The suburb called the Rabad c Othm4n ibn Nuhayk, 
which was included in the quarter of the Khuw&riz- 
mians, took its name from a certain "Othman who 
was captain of the Horse Guards in the reign of 
Man§(ir ; and Rushayd, another of the freedmen of 
this Caliph, gave his name to the adjacent Rabad 
Rushayd. In addition to these, Y4kAt gives the 
names of various other suburbs of this quarter, 
which were called after the nobles, to whom the 
lands here had originally been granted in fief by 
Man§&r and his successors. The Abn&, from whom 
the shops (Dukk&n) above mentioned took their 
name, are said to have been Persian nobles who had 
adopted Arab nationality, for the term Abnd (the 
plural in Arabic of Idn) is explained as meaning the 
4 sons of the Dihk&ns.' These Dihk&ns were the old 
territorial Persian chiefs who were already settled 
in Mesopotamia at the time of the Moslem conquest, 
many of whom having accepted Islam were left in 
peaceable possession of their lands, and under the 
Abbasid Caliphs were employed in the various offices 
or government Diwdns \ 

The Dujayl Road Canal, after traversing these 
various Persian fiefs, turned off at right angles, flowing 
down towards the Syrian Gate, and first passed under 
the bridge called the Kanfarah-Abu-1-Jawn. This 
took its name from the Dihk&n or Persian noble who 

1 Ibn Scrapion, vj\ Yakut, ii. 750, 751 ; iv. 480, 485 ; Mas'udi, iv. 
188; Mafatih-al-'Ulum, 119. 



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x.] The Harblyah Quarter 129 

had owned the village of Sharafeniyah that had 
occupied this site before Baghdad was built; and 
some palms which had belonged to the old village 
were still standing near this bridge in the year 450 
(a.d. 1058), close to which stood the palace (D4r) of 
a certain Sa'td-al-Khatfb. The Abu-1-Jawn Bridge 
in all probability was on the Dujayl road, near 
where it joined the highroad which ran direct from 
the Syrian Gate up into the Harblyah Quarter. 
Ya'kflbt names this the Market of the Syrian Gate, 
and here all kinds of wares and merchandise were 
to be found exposed for sale in the shops, both to 
right and to left, along the thoroughfare, from which 
also numerous streets branched into neighbouring 
courts and alleys, each being named after the 
people of the province from which its inhabitants 
had originally come. Near the Abu-1-Jawn Bridge 
stood the Orphan School (Kutt£b-al-Yatam£) ; and 
here a transverse watercourse struck off from the 
canal of the Dujayl highroad, flowing into the canal 
of the Harb Gate highroad (already described), 
which latter it joined at the Quadrangle of Shablb. 
This connecting branch canal, therefore, must have 
crossed under both the Market of the Syrian Gate 
and the highroad running from the Upper Bridge of 
Boats to the Syrian Gate/probably by culverts near 
the Shablb Quadrangle \ 

On or near the highroad to the Upper Bridge of 

1 Ibn Serapion, 27 ; Khatib, 79 b ; Yakubi, 248 ; Tabari, iii. 279 ; 
Yakut, iii. 277. In the MSS. of Khatib the name of Abu-1-Jawn is 
often incorrectly written Ab\i-\-Jaws. In my translation of Ibn 
Serapion (/. R. A. S., 1895, p. 294) for ' Scribes' read School of the 
Orphans. The word Kutt&b, as Professor De Goeje has pointed out 
to me, has evidently here this meaning, and is not to be taken as the 
plural oiKdtib, 'scribe.' 

BAGHDAD K 



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130 Baghdad during the Caliphate [en. 

Boats, and in a line between the Quadrangle of 
Shabib and the Syrian Gate, stood three T£k£t — 
archways or arcades — which were called after their 
several builders. The nearest of these to the Quad- 
rangle of Shabib, into which it led by a thoroughfare, 
was the Tikit-al-'Akld, which gave its name to the 
street called Sikkat-al-'Akki, having been built by a 
certain Mukitil, of the Yamanite tribe of "Akk, one 
of the generals of the Caliph Man§flr, from whom 
Mukitil had received the grant of a fief in this 
quarter. This is said to have been the first of the 
arcades to be built in Baghdad, and next to it came 
the T&k4t-al-Ghitrif. Ghitrlf was at one time governor 
of the Yaman province, he being brother of the 
Princess Khayzur&n, mother of the two Caliphs H4dt 
and Hirfln-ar-Rashld, to whom therefore Ghitrlf 
stood in the relationship of maternal uncle. The 
Ghitrlf archways were the second of those built in 
Baghdad, and adjacent to them were the T&k&t Abu 
Suwayd, the latest to be built These occupied the 
fief and suburb of Abu Suwayd, surnamed Al Jfirftd, 
and they traversed part of the cemetery which lay 
immediately outside the Syrian Gate. 

The Syrian Gate of the City of Man§for gave 
egress to the three principal highroads traversing 
the northern suburbs of Wfcst Baghdad, two of which 
have already been mentioned. On the right went 
the road to the Upper Bridge of Boats with the 
archways just described ; and next this came the 
road into the Harbiyah Quarter, which is known as 
the Market of the Syrian Gate; while on the left 
was the highroad going towards the Anb&r Gate on 
the Trench of T&hir. Fronting the Syrian Gate 
stood the great jail, built by the Caliph Man§tir, and 



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xj The Harbtyah Quarter 131 

known as the Prison of the Syrian Gate. Down to 
the latter half of the third century (the ninth a.d.) 
this continued to be the chief jail of West Baghdad, 
for in the year 255 (a.d. 869), when Sulaymfin the 
TAhirid was governor of Baghdad (the Caliphs then 
being resident at S&marrfi), the chronicle relates how 
this prison was broken open by the mob during an 
insurrection, and much trouble ensued in the recap- 
ture of the malefactors who had escaped. The 
adjacent Cemetery of the Syrian Gate is stated 
to have been the earliest of the burial grounds in 
West Baghdad, having been laid out by Mansur 
after he had finished the Round City. In course 
of time much of its area came to be built over by 
the houses of the Harblyah and adjacent quarters, 
though as late as the beginning of the fourth 
century (the tenth a.d.) mention is made of this 
cemetery as a place where personages of note 
were still buried. 

In front of the Syrian Gate, and across the ceme- 
tery, ran the small canal so often mentioned, which 
came up from the Kfifah Gate and ultimately lost 
itself in the lower limits of the Zubaydlyah Fief to 
the northward. Into this canal, at some distance to 
the right of the gate towards the Tigris bank, flowed 
the surplus waters of the Canal of the Harb Gate 
Road, while to the left of the gate flowed in the 
discharge of the Canal of the Dujayl Road. The 
lower portion of the Canal of the Dujayl Road, 
after turning down past the Orphan School (already 
described), must have crossed through culverts under 
both the highroad of the Market of the Syrian Gate 
and the road leading to the Anbir Gate, after 
passing behind (to the north-west of) the prison. 

k 2 



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132 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Near here must have been the Road of the Palace 
of H&ni (Shfiri* Kasr Hint), mentioned by Ibn 
Serapion, next to which on the canal came the 
Garden of Al-Kass in the suburb of that name, 
said to have been called after a freedman of the 
Caliph Mansflr 1 . 

The highroad from the Syrian Gate to the Anb£r 
Gate would appear to have passed to the north of 
the Garden of Kass, and it probably ran between 
this and the Palace of H4nt above mentioned. The 
great triangular space of ground lying between the 
three points marked by the Ktifah, the Syrian, and 
the Anb&r Gates — and which was bounded by the 
Little Sar4t and part of the Syrian Gate Canal on 
two sides, with the Harblyah Quarter on the third — 
was occupied by a number of roads and crossroads, 
which appear to have come in the following order. 
Beginning from the Trench of TAhir at the AnbAr 
Gate, the Anbfir highroad, as already stated, led direct 
to the Syrian Gate of the City of Mansflr, and along 
its upper part ran the water-channel which retained 
the name of the BatStiyA Canal, and which had 
crossed the Trench by the Bridge of the AnbAr 
Gate. This channel, after passing some short way 

1 Ibn Serapion, 27; YaTcubi, 241, 247, 248; 'Arib, 47; Khatib, 
folio nib; Yakut, iii. 488, 489; Ibn-al-Athir, vii. 137. The name 
is also written Al-Kuss, and it is somewhat puzzling to find that 
according to Tabari (iii. 274) there was already a ' Bustan-al-Kass,' 
near Baghdad, before the Moslem city was founded. Further, there 
was a Dayr or monastery, the head of which gave the Caliph 
Mansur advice in the matter of the site for the projected capital. In 
this passage Bus tdn-al- Kass would appear to mean simply 'the 
Priest's Garden/ the last word not being taken as a proper name, 
and this recalls a former passage in Tabari (iii. 273), where mention 
is made of the Bay ah gass (without the article), presumably the 
' Priest's Church.' 



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x.] The Harbiyah Quarter 133 

down the Anb&r Road, turned off and finally lost 
itself in what is known as the Road of the Ram 
(Sh&ri'-al-Kabsh), which appears to have been a 
thoroughfare branching from the Anbir Road, im- 
mediately within the gate, and running down towards 
the bank of the Little $arit Canal. 

The quarter here was known as Al-Kabsh-wa-1- 
Asad (the Ram and the Lion), and as late as the 
beginning of the fifth century (the eleventh a.d.) 
the houses and streets of the suburbs of West 
Baghdad, on the highroad towards Anb4r, extended 
as far as this line. Soon after that date, however, 
the region came to be deserted, for Khaftb states 
that while in his youth this region had still been 
occupied by many houses, and had even possessed 
a crowded market, yet when in later life, namely 
about the year 450 (a.d. 1058), he had come to visit 
the place, only arable fields were then to be seen 
lying at a considerable distance from the nearest 
houses of the suburb. In explanation of its curious 
name, Y&kflt writes that the Ram and the Lion 
originally represented two separate streets leading 
into the neighbouring suburb of the Nasrlyah, but 
which in his day had long since disappeared. The! 
tomb of Ibr£htm-al-Harbt stood in this quarter, on j 
the highroad at no great distance from the Anbdr 
Gate, and it is spoken of by Mas'fidl in the fourth 
century (the tenth a.d.) in connexion with these 
streets of the Ram and the Lion, when mentioning 
a burial which took place in the cemetery near the 
Anbdr Gate. Ibrdhtm-al-Harbl (that is of the Har- 
biyah Quarter) had been a celebrated traditionist, 
and became a saint, whose shrine was a notable 
place of visitation. He had been one of the most 



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i34 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

famous of the pupils of Ibn Hanbal, the great Sunnl 
Im4m, and dying in the year 285 (a.d. 898) was 
buried in his own house, which stood on the AnbSr 
Road 1 , His tomb still existed as late as the year 
700 (a.d. 1300), but at that date, as was to be 
expected from the account of this quarter already 
quoted from Khaftb, the author of the Mardstd states 
that it had come to stand solitary in the midst of 
the fields, all the neighbouring houses haying long 
ago disappeared. 

Among the fiefs of this suburb, detailed by Ya'kfibt, 
two other roads are mentioned, namely the Road 
of the Cages (Darb-al-Akf&s) and the Fullers' Road 
(Darb-al-Ka§s&rln), and adjacent thereto stood the 
Bukhariot Mosque (Masjid-al-Bukh&rtyah),celebrated 
for its green minaret. According to Tabart, the 
Road of the Cages occupied the site of a village 
called Al-Kha|;t£btyah, that had existed here before 
the Caliph Man§flr began to build the Round City, 
the site of which originally stretched as far as the 
neighbouring gate of the Darb-an-Nftrah (the Chalk 
Road). Some of the ancient palm-trees of the village 
were still growing here at the close of the second 
century (the eighth a. d.) in the reign of Amtn ; and 
from the author of the Mardstd we learn that the 
Kha^btyah had stood on the bank of the Little 
$ar&t, near where the Ram and Lion Quarter, with 
the tomb of Ibr&htm-al-Harbt, afterwards came to 
be built. Finally, beyond this, and probably on the 
northern side of the Anbir Road, lay the open space 
known as the Ramallyah (the Sandy Place), for this 

1 In Marasid, ii. 85, line 8, the words ' Bab-al-Anbar of the City of 
Al-Mansur* must undoubtedly be a mistake for BAb-ash-Shdm, the 
Syrian Gate, of the Round City. 



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x.] The Harbtyah Quarter 135 

was the boundary of the Harbtyah in the direction 
of the Anb&r Gate, at the time when Ya'kflbl wrote, 
namely at the close of the third century (the 
ninth a.d.) \ 

1 Ibn Serapion, 27 ; Khatib, folio 67 a ; Ya'kubi, 247, 248 ; Yakut, 
ii. 235 ; iv. 233 ; Marasid, i. 358 ; ii. 85 ; Mas'udi, viii. 184 ; Tabari, 
iii. 279. 



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CHAPTER XI 

THE QUARTERS OF THE MUHAWWAL GA^E 

The Four Markets. The Nasriyah Quarter. The 'Attabiyah 
Quarter; its watered silks and papermakers. The Dar-al-Kazz or 
the Silk House. The Upper Barley Gate. The 'Atikfyah Suburb: 
the Kahtabah Road and Suburb. The Palace of 'Abd-al-Wahhab 
and his Suburb. The 'Abbasfyah Island. The Patrician's Mill. 
The story of the Greek Patrician. The Muhawwal Road. The Fief 
of 'tsa and the Muhawwal Gate. The Suburb of Haylanah. The 
Suburb of Humayd, son of Kahtabah. Bridges of the Mills, of China, 
and of 'Abbas, leading to the 'Abbasfyah Island. The Bridge of the 
Greeks and the Fief of the Farrashes. The Old Tank. The Bridges 
on the Great §arat and Karkhaya. The Kunasah and the Market 
for Beasts of Burden. The Yasiriyah Quarter. 

The Garden of Kass, on the lowest reach of the 
Dujayl Road Canal, has already been mentioned, 
and near this stood the Four Markets, which was 
the centre of one of the most populous quarters of 
West Baghdad. 

These Four Markets were known under the 
Persian-Arabic name of the Shir Silk, or the Shah&r 
Sftj — the first word being the Persian numeral 
ChaJi&r, ' four,' with Stij for SM t in Arabic meaning 
'a market' — and they had been built by k certain 
Al-Haytham, a native of Khur&sin, a captain of 
troops in the days of the Caliph Mansftr, after whom 
the place was also called by the Arabs the Sflk 



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. ii_ J 



The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 137 

(or Market of) Al-Haytham. From the time of 
its foundation it became a great emporium of mer- 
chandise, being soon surrounded by streets and 
lanes with warehouses, forming a quarter by itself. 
In the middle of the fourth century (the tenth a.d.) 
the Four Markets were apparently rebuilt, for they 
are mentioned by Hamd-Allah as among the cele- 
brated constructions undertaken by the Buyid Prince 
"Adud-ad-Dawlah. Near the Four Markets stood 
a minaret which Khaftb mentions as having been 
built here by Humayd ibn 'Abd-al-Hamtd, who 
owned the Ka§r tfumayd on the Tigris bank, near 
the Lower Bridge of Boats, which has already 
been described. The suburb of the Four Markets 
stood at some little distance to the south-west 
of the older Harbtyah, and round it, connected 
by market streets, lay three other quarters, which 
are frequently mentioned in the later history of 
Baghdad, namely the^Iasrfyah, the "Att&btyah, and 
the D&r-al-Kazz (the Silk House). At the time 
when ^Yaktit wrote — namely in 623 (a.d. 1226) — 
these were still very populous quarters, being then 
chiefly celebrated for the manufacture of an excel- 
lent kind of paper ; but all round them lay the ruins 
of former suburbs marked by the lines of deserted 
streets and fallen houses. 

The Nasrlyah, otherwise called the Suburb of 
Na§r ibn 'Abd-AUah, must have occupied a con- 
siderable extent of ground. A thoroughfare led 
thence towards the Dujayl highroad, but there is 
some question as to its exact position. The c Att4- 
blyah or 'Att&blyln Quarter, which lay to the north 
of the Four Markets, was famous for the manu- 
facture of the 'Att&bl stuffs, woven of mixed silk 



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138 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

and cotton in variegated colours, which were cele- 
brated throughout all Moslem countries. The 
'Attdbiyah Quarter perpetrated the name of 'Attdb, 
great-grandson of Omayyah (the ancestor of the 
Omayyad Caliphs), and 'Att&b, who was a con- 
temporary of the Prophet, had been named by 
Muhammad to be Governor of Mecca, a post which 
he also continued to hold during the reign of the 
Caliph Abu Bakr. The quarter of Baghdad which 
bore his name appears to have been occupied by 
his descendants who had settled here at an unknown 
period, and the name of the 'Att&blyin afterwards 
obtained a world-wide renown by reason of the silk 
stuffs which were first manufactured in this suburb \ 
Ibn Jubayr in 580 (a.d. 1184) mentions the c Att&- 
blyln as one of the most flourishing parts of West 
Baghdad in his day ; and a street called the Shdrf- 

1 This name has had a long life. The 'Attabt silks became famous 
throughout the Moslem world, and were imitated in other towns. 
Idrisi in 548 (a.d. 1153) describes Almeria in Southern Spain as in 
his time possessing eight hundred looms for silk-weaving, and the 
'Attabi stuffs are particularly mentioned among those that were there 
manufactured. The name passed into Spanish under the form attabi y 
and thence to Italian and French as tains. The name toby for a rich 
kind of silk is now obsolete in English, but in the seventeenth and 
eighteenth centuries the word was in common use v In February, 
1603, when Elizabeth received the Venetian envoy Scaramelli, the 
Queen is described as wearing 'a dress of silver and white taby' 
{vestita di tabi d } argento et bianco). The diary of Samuel Pepys 
records how on October 13, 1661, he wore his 'false-taby waiste- 
coate with gold lace'; and a century later Miss Burney, on 
the occasion of the birthday of the Princess Royal at Windsor, 
September 29, 1786, appeared in a gown of 'lilac tabby. 1 Dr. 
Johnson gives the spelling tabby in his dictionary, and explains it as 
* a kind of waved silk,' adding that the tabby cat is so named from 
the brindled markings of the fur. It is certainly curious that the 
common epithet applied to a cat in modern English should be derived 
from the name of a man who was a Companion of the Prophet 
Muhammad and governor of Mecca in the seventh century a.d. 



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xi.] The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 139 

al-Gh&mish connected this quarter with the neigh- 
bouring D&r-al-Kazz, in which thoroughfare had 
stood a mosque for the Friday prayers, but this in 
the year 700 (a.d. 1300) had already fallen tq ruins. 

The quarter of the D&r-al-Kazz or Silk House 
is described by Y&kflt as a large suburb which in 
his day stood a league distant from the quarters 
of West Baghdad at the Basrah Gate. In the 
seventh century (the thirteenth a.d.) it was sur- 
rounded by mounds of rubbish and ruins ; but the 
paper manufactured here continued to be famous 
throughout the East Apparently in early times 
a second or Upper Barley Gate (B4b-ash-Sh& c ir) l 
had stood in the neighbourhood of the Silk House, 
on the side towards the T&hirid Harlm. There is, 
however, evidently some confusion in the accounts. 
Y&kflt, who says that this gate had completely 
disappeared in his time, describes it as having been 
the centre of a quarter lying on the Tigris above 
the City of Mansflr, at the place where the ships 
from Mosul and Ba§rah came to their moorings — 
in other words, at the Upper Harbour. The shifting 
of the river bed may account for some of the diffi- 
culty in fixing the position of the Upper Barley 
Gate, but it is not easy to understand how, if indeed 
this gate had been near the Silk House of the 
'Attdblyah Quarter, it could have stood on the Tigris 
bank and adjacent to the Tihirid Harlm. 

Another quarter, the position of which cannot be 
very clearly defined, but which appears to have 
been of this same neighbourhood, was that known 
as the 'Attktyah, which when Y&kflt wrote wasr 

1 For the other Barley Gate, near the Lower Bridge of Boats, see 
P. 95. 



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140 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

already in ruin. He describes it as having stood 
between the Harblyah and the later Quarter of the 
Ba§rah Gate — possibly within the ruins of what had 
originally been the City of Man§flr — and it was 
named after a certain 'Atlk ibn Hal&l the Persian l . 
From the neighbourhood of the Garden of Kass, 
and doubtless communicating directly with the Four 
Markets, thence leading down to the square in 
front of the Kflfah Gate, ran the thoroughfare 
known as the Kaltfabah Road (Sh&rf-al-Kuh&tibah, 
for the plural form of the name is used), which 
traversed the suburb of Hasan ibn Kahfabah. 
The Kahfabah family had taken a prominent 
part in the events which led to the accession of 
the Abbasids, and fiefs were granted by the 
Caliph Man§flr to more than one member of this 
house. Kahfabah, father of Hasan and Humayd, 
had been one of those zealous partisans or mission- 
aries who, in Omayyad days, had publicly preached 
the right of the house of 'Abb&s to the Caliphate ; 
but he lost his life before the time came for the 
full realization of his hopes, being drowned while 
crossing the Euphrates at the head of his troops 
in the year 132 (a.d. 749). His son Hasan suc- 
ceeded to the command of the Abbasid army, and 
in time effected the conquest of Mesopotamia for 
his masters. He stood in high favour with Man§Gr, 
and only died in the year 181 (a.d. 797), under the 
reign of H&rGn-ar-Rashld. The fief in West Baghdad 
that had been granted him, and through which the 

1 Yakubi, 247 ; Khatib, folio 80b; Yakut, i. 445 ; ii. 167, 522, 751 ; 
iii. 614; iv. 786; Ibn Jubayr, 227; Marasid, i. 112; ii. 85; Suyuti, 
175 ; Guzidah, book iy, section 5, reign of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah. This 
'Atiklyah must not be confounded with the 'Atfkah suburb, mentioned 
p. 90. 



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xi.] The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 141 

Kahfabah Road lay, stretched along a quadrant of 
the wall of the Round City from outside the KOfah 
Gate to near the Syrian Gate. Up this road and 
parallel with the line of the wall ran the Canal 
of the Syrian Gate, already so often mentioned, 
which, at the beginning of the fourth century (the 
tenth a.d.), according to Ibn Serapion, threw off 
a channel to the right, that passed 'in among the 
remains of the City of MansGr/ showing that at 
this date the wall of the Round City had already 
fallen to ruin. 

On the other side of the Kahtabah Road, and 
lying along the lower part of the Little $ar£t Canal, 
was the Palace and Fief of 'Abd-al-Wahhdb, nephew 
of the Caliph Mansflr. Near by stood the Market 
of c Abd-al-Wahh&b (as already mentioned, p. 59), 
at no great distance from the Square of the Kflfah 
Gate, and the market street appears to have con- 
nected the Kahtabah Road with the Kflfah Gate 
Square. The whole of this suburb must have fallen 
to ruin at an early date, for Ibn Abi Mariyam — who 
died in 224 (a.d. 839) — writes that when passing 
across it he found all the houses fallen in and 
deserted, and Ya'ktibl, half a century later, states 
that both palace and market had in his time almost 
entirely disappeared l . 

The channel of the Little $ardt, along the lower 
course of which the 'Abd-al-Wahh&b Fief stretched, 
was, as already stated, a loop canal of the Great 
$ar&t, and compared with it must have been an 
insignificant stream, as is shown by the fact that 
no bridges were needed for the roads to cross it. 
The Little Sardt began at the T£hirid Trench (a 

1 Ya'kubi, 242, 246, 247 ; Ibn Serapion, 25 ; Khatib, folio 80 a. 



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142 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

short distance below where this last left the parent 
stream of the Great $ar&t), and took its course 
through the garden lands on the outskirts of Baghdad, 
flowing back finally into the Great $ar&t not far 
above the Old Bridge in front of the Kflfah Gate 
Square. The island thus included between the 
Great and the Little $ar&t was known as the 
c Abb£styah, and immediately above where the two 
streams ultimately came together lay the water-mills 
called Ruh&-al-Batrtk, or the Patrician's Mill. The 
c Abb£slyah Island took its name from Al- c Abb&s, 
brother of the Caliph Mansftr, to whom it had been 
granted in fief. He laid it out in gardens and corn- 
lands, which became celebrated for their fertility, 
for, in the words of a contemporary account, * at no 
time, neither by summer nor by winter, did its crops 
ever fail/ 

The great mill which stood at the junction of the 
two $ar£ts is said originally to have possessed one 
hundred millstones, and produced in yearly rent 
the fabulous sum of one hundred million dirhams 
(say ,£4,000,000). The mill had received its name, 
according to the earlier authorities, from a certain 
Byzantine Patrician who had come to Baghdad as 
ambassador from the Greek Emperor, and who, 
having a knowledge of engineering, had built it to 
please the Caliph. Such is the account given by 
Ya'kflbi, written in 278 (a.d. 891), but the building 
is also sometimes referred to as the Mill of Abu 
Ja'far, that is to say of the Caliph MansOr ; and 
occasionally, though apparently in error, we find it 
named the Mill of Umm Ja'far, who is the princess 
Zubaydah, the celebrated wife of H&rftn-ar-Rashld \ 

1 Yakuts iv. 522; Marasid, ii. 485; and compare Tabari, Hi. 887. 



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xij The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 143 

This confusion in the name is probably accountable 
for the assertion by Khattb in one place that it was 
the Abbasid Prince c ls4 (uncle of the Caliph Mansfir), 
and according to the generally received account the 
digger of the c lsd Canal, who had been the founder 
also of these mills. In another passage, however, 
Khatlb (and Y4k0t copies both statements from 
him) gives a long anecdote, in which the building 
of the mills is attributed to the Greek Patrician 
who came as ambassador from Constantinople to 
Baghdad. 

The name of the Greek envoy is here stated to 
have been Tdrdth, fifth in descent from Martik, who 
had been Emperor of the Greeks in the days of 
the Caliph Mu'&wiyah (in point of fact Constans II 
and Constantine IV were the contemporaries of 
Mu'&wiyah), and this T&r&th had come to Baghdad 
to convey to the Caliph Mahdi, on his accession, the 
congratulations of the Byzantine Caesar. The date, 
therefore, must have been about the year 158 
(a.d. 775), when Mahdl succeeded his father Mansflr. 
The anecdote begins by relating how in former days 
the Caliph Man§Gr had granted a garden on the 
Sardt Canal to his chamberlain Rabi* (already 
mentioned in connexion with another Greek am- 
bassador, see p. 65), and how this garden, which 
produced most excellent dates and other fruits, had 
in due time come to be inherited by Fadl, son of 
Rabf, who, succeeding to his father s honours, served 
the Caliph Mahdl as Wazlr. The Greek envoy 

There was also a Mill of Umm-Ja'far, or Zubaydah, on the Tahirid 
Trench in the Zubaydiyah Fief (see above, p. 1 13). Khatib, folio 86 a, 
from whom Yakut gets his information, gives the name as Abu Ja'far, 
i. e. the Caliph Mansur. 



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144 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

having duly presented his message of congratulation 
remained for some time in Baghdad as the guest 
of the Caliph Mahdl, and ultimately being much 
pleased with his reception, offered in gratitude to 
build a great mill on the $ar&t. By order of the 
Caliph the Wazir Fadl supplied the sum of half 
a million dirhams (say ;£ 20,000) for building ex- 
penses, and it was promised that the mills would 
produce this same sum yearly in clear profit from 
the rents paid by the millers. This proving to be 
the case, the Caliph was so much gratified that 
he ordered the whole of this rent to be paid over 
in free gift to the envoy ; and even after the latter 
had returned to Constantinople the sum was year 
after year transmitted to him there, down to the 
date of his death, which occurred in 163 (a.d. 780), 
after which time, by order of the Caliph, the rent 
was kept back and expended in the maintenance 
of the estate. 

Whatever may be the grain of truth in this anec- 
dote, there can be no doubt that the mills existed 
in the year 197 (a.d. 813), for they are mentioned 
as having suffered some damage during the first 
siege of Baghdad, when T&hir, after driving the 
unfortunate Caliph Amin within the walls of the 
Round City, demolished and burnt many of the houses 
in this and the neighbouring quarters. Apparently, 
however, the mills were then not permanently 
injured, for they were in working order down to 
the close of the third century (the ninth a.d.), when 
Ya'kObl and Ibn Serapion wrote their descriptions 
of Baghdad. When, indeed, the mills fell to ruin 
does not seem to be mentioned in the chronicles, 
but in the year 700 (a.d. 1300) the author of the 



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xi.] The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 145 

Mardsid in writing his epitome of Y&kflt, remarks 
that no trace of them was then to be seen. 

As militating against the story that it was the 
Greek envoy of the days of Mahdi who first built 
these mills, it must be stated that Tabarl, when 
narrating the events which led to the foundation of 
Baghdad by Mansftr, particularly mentions a certain 
Batrlk as among those who offered the Caliph advice 
in the matter of the site, and Tabart adds that this 
was the builder of the mill of the Batrlk. From 
the context, however, where mention is made of the 
Christian monastery (Dayr) on the Tigris bank, 
near the site of the later Palace of the Khuld, 
it is evident that in this passage Bafrtk has the 
signification not of ' Patrician ' but of ' Patriarch V 
and the mills would therefore appear to have 
dated from times previous to the Abbasid Cali- 
phate, and to have been the work of Nestorian 
Christians. 

Immediately below the junction of the Little 
$ar&t with the Great $ar£t, the Old Bridge carried 
the highroad from the KOfah Gate across the canal, 
and here, a short distance beyond the bridge, the 
way bifurcated. That to the left was the great 
Kflfah highroad leading south through the Karkh 
Quarter, which has been described in chapters v 
and vi : we have now to deal with the road to the 
right, which, turning westward and passing through 
the lands lying between the upper reach of the 

1 According to the dictionaries, * Patriarch * ought to be rendered 
by Batrak or Batrik (with the */*dotted k), this being the proper 
Arabic equivalent of the Greek Uarpiapxns ; while ' Patrician • is in 
Arabic Batrik (with the dotted £), this standing for UarpUios. Ibn 
Serapion, 24 ; Ya'kubi, 243 ; Yakut, ii. 759 ; Khatib, folios 86 a, b, 87 a, b ; 
Marasid, i. 463 ; Tabari, iii. 274, 887. 

BAGHDAD L 



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146 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Great §ar&t and the Karkh&yd Canal, was the first 
portion of the highroad from Baghdad to Anb&r on 
the Euphrates, This was known as the Muhawwal 
Road, from the name of the first town on it, called 
Al-Muhawwal, which lay one league out from 
Baghdad on the banks of the c Is4 Canal. 

Near the bifurcation from the Kflfah Road, the 
Muhawwal Road at first skirted the Fief and Palaces 
of Prince f ts&, uncle of the Caliph Man§Gr, who, 
according to the usually accepted account, had 
dug the c ls4 Canal, and these buildings with their 
grounds occupied the space between the road and 
the $ar&t Canal. Beyond lay other fiefs, and then 
the road passed under the great vaulted gateway, 
known as the B&b-al-Muhawwal, which gave its 
name to the whole of the neighbouring quarter. 
The Muhawwal Gate appears to have stood un- 
injured for fully five centuries, for it existed in 
the time of the last Abbasid Caliph, and long 
after the neighbouring KGfah Gate of the City 
of Man§Gr had disappeared with the ruin of West 
Baghdad. Y&kflt and the author of the Mardsid, 
as late as the year 700 (a.d. 1300), both speak of it 
as the centre of the great quarter, then inhabited 
entirely by Sunnls, which stood like a separate 
township with its own mosque, and its markets that 
were still much frequented. Forming part of this 
quarter and towards Karkh — probably on the 
opposite side of the Muhawwal Road to the c Is4 
Fief just mentioned — came the suburb of Hayl&nah, 
called after the Greek slave named Helena, who 
is said to have been a favourite concubine of 
H&rfln-ar-Rashld, and the stewardess of the Harlm. 
A tank also called after her will be mentioned in 



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xi.] The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 147 

a later chapter when East Baghdad comes to be 
described. 

After passing through the Muhawwal Gate the 
highroad came to the suburb of Humayd, which 
extended for some distance beyond the gate, going 
across from the upper reach of the Great Sar&t on 
the right hand down to the Karkh4y& Canal on 
the left, where this last was spanned by the Hospital 
Bridge ; and the Razln Canal, which here branched 
from the KarkhdyS, is described as having traversed 
the lower part of the Humayd Suburb. This suburb 
took its name from Humayd, son of Kahtabah, 
whose brother Hasan has already been spoken of 
as possessing the fiefs along the Kahtabah Road 
between the KGfah and the Syrian Gates. Humayd, 
like his brother, was a favourite noble of Manjftr, 
and as has been mentioned on a former page, he 
was the general dispatched by the Caliph to crush 
the Alid insurrection which had broken out in 
Medina at the time when Baghdad was being 
founded. Having successfully disposed of the rebels, 
Humayd returned to Baghdad, where he was re- 
warded by the gift of this fief, and afterwards, in 
the year 143, the Caliph appointed him Governor 
of Egypt, though he kept the post for little more 
than a year (a.d. 760 to 762). liumayd at a later 
date was named Governor of Khur&s&n \ and died 
in the year 159 (a.d. 776). The Humayd Suburb 

1 He resided at Tus— the ruins of which exist at the present day, 
not far from Meshed — in the neighbourhood of which he built his 
great palace. It is described as having covered a square mile of 
ground ; and here at a later date, in part of its gardens, the Caliph 
Harun-ar-Rashid was buried, also the Imam of the Shfahs, 'Ali-ar- 
Rida, whose shrine is still the most venerated sanctuary in modern 
Persia, being the chief mosque in Meshed, the capital of Khurasan. 

L 2 



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148 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

is described as having its principal thoroughfare 
lying along the upper reach of the Great $ar&t, and 
it must have extended over and across the lower 
part of the Island of the 'Abb&siyah, for on the 
northern side it was coterminous with the Na§rlyah 
and the Four Markets in the Suburb of Haytham, 
both of which quarters lay on the further side of 
the Little $arfit Unlike these, however, which con- 
tinued to be flourishing and populous quarters down 
to a late time, the Humayd Suburb had fallen to 
ruin, probably before the close of the fourth century 
(the tenth a.d.) 1 . 

The 'Abb&slyah Island, the lower part of which was 
occupied by the Humayd Suburb, on the one side 
was bounded by the Little $arfit, a watercourse, as 
has already been described, so small as to need no 
bridges for the roads to cross it. On the other side, 
however, where the upper reach of the Great Sar&t 
formed the boundary, three bridges gave access to 
the island from the quarters along the Muliawwal 
highroad. The lowest of these stood close to the 
Patrician's Mill, from which it took its name (Kan- 
tarah Ruhi-al-Bafrtk), being also known as Kantarah- 
az-Zubd (the Butter Bridge), but there is some doubt 
about the pronunciation and meaning of this name. 
The next bridge above this was the Kantarah-a§- 
$tnty£t, which may signify the Porcelain Bridge, Sin 
being the Arab name for China, both the country 
and its most notable ware. Possibly, however, 
the name is of Aramaic origin, in which case it 
would signify the Bridge of the Date-palms, and 
As-$ln with this sense is a name common to other 

1 Ya'kubi, 244; Ibn Serapion, 25; Yakut, i. 451; ii. 750, 752; Hi. 
201, 560; iv. 255; Marasid, L 113. 



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xi.] The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 149 

places in Lower Mesopotamia \ The highest up of 
the three bridges was the Kantarah-al- c Abb£s, 
doubtless so called after the brother of the Caliph 
Man§flr, from whom the f AbMslyah Island took its 
name ; and from each of these three bridges streets 
must have gone down from the island to the 
Muhawwal Road. 

This last, as soon as the Muhawwal Gate had 
been passed, had on the left hand and lying between 
the roadway and the Karkh4y& Canal, the Fief 
of the Farrishes or Carpet-spreaders (Katl'at-al- 
Farr&shtn), otherwise known as the House of the 
Greeks (D£r-ar-RGmly!n). This is the account given 
by Ya'kGbt in 278 (a.d. 891), who adds that the 
Karkh&y& was here crossed by the Bridge of the 
Greeks (Kanfarah-ar-Rtimtyin), a name recalling 
the Bridge of the Greek Woman (Kantarah-ar-Rfimt- 
yah), which Ibn Serapion mentions as lying on the 
Nahr c fs&; and it seems probable that this Bridge 
of the Greek Woman on the parallel canal was con- 
nected by a road with the Bridge of the Greeks 
on the Karkh£y&. After traversing the tfumayd 
Suburb, and leaving the Fief of the Farr&shes or 
of the Greeks on the left, the Muhawwal Road 
approached the bank of the Karkhiyd Canal ; and all 
along this part of the highway there were shops to 
right and left, forming a market that was plentifully 
supplied with wares of all kinds. At the further 
end of this (probably lying on the right-hand side, 
for the canal was to the left) the Muhawwal Road 

1 Yakut (Hi. 378) in place of ' As-Smlyat ' gives A?-SaMbdt, and he 
copies the whole of this passage from Ibn Serapion. His reading, 
however, is probably a clerical error, for all the MSS. of Khatib give 
the first reading. 



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150 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

came to the Old Tank (Al-tfawd-al-'Attk), round 
which were grouped the houses belonging to certain 
Persians, the followers of Sh&h ibn Sahl, killed in 
223 (a.d. 838), who had been a favourite noble of 
the Caliph Mu'ta?im. 

Near this point the Karkh£y& Canal was crossed 
by the Bridge of the Street of Rocks (Kantarah 
Darb-al-Hij&rah), where a branch road must have 
turned off to the left, while beyond this came the 
highest up of the bridges which crossed the Kar- 
kh&y£, namely the Kantarah -al-Yahftd or the Jews' 
Bridge (some MSS. of Khatlb add 'of the Jews 
Fief), near to which stood the gate called the 
B&b Abu Kablsah 1 . This gate and bridge on the 
canal were near an open space on the Muhawwal 
Road, known as Al-Kun&sah, where, as the name 
implies, lay great rubbish-heaps {Kundsah in Arabic 
means ' a sweeping ') ; here it was customary for those 
who came in to the markets of Baghdad to tie up 
their beasts of burden, and in the adjacent quarter 
a market was held for the sale of camels, horses, 
mules, and asses 2 . 

At the time of the first siege of Baghdad, a great 
battle extending over many days took place during 
the latter part of the year 197 (a.d. 813) near the 
Kundsah, between the partisans of the Caliph Amln 
and the troops of T&hir, who had his siege camp, 
as already mentioned, outside the Anb&r Gate on 
the Trench, at the further side of the 'Abb&slyah 



1 This is the right pronunciation of the name, which in my transla- 
tion of Ibn Serapion (p. 286) is incorrectly given in the diminutive 
form — ' Abu-Kubaysah.' 

* Ibn Serapion, 14, 24, 25; Ya'kubi, 244; Yakut, ii. 914; iii. 378; 
De Goeje in Z, D. M. G,, xxxix, p. 9, note 4. 



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xi.] The Quarters of the Muhawwal Gate 151 

Island. During the fight many of the neighbouring 
quarters were set on fire, and in the account given 
by Tabari mention is frequently made of the Kun&sah 
Quarter, with the Street of the Rocks (Darb-al- 
Hij&rah), and the battle raged all along the line of 
the KarkhiyA Canal down to the Suburb of Humayd 
and the Muhawwal Gate. In connexion with these 
events Mas'Gdt refers to the gate called the B&b-al- 
Kun&sah, which must either have stood on the 
Muhawwal Road, or possibly may have been iden- 
tical with the B&b Abu Kablsah (of Ibn Serapion), 
already mentioned. 

The houses in the outskirts of the Baghdad 
suburbs extended a? far as this point on the Kar- 
khdyi Canal, which last is described as entering the 
city limits at the Abu Kablsah Gate. On the c fs£ 
Canal, near here, was the Y&sirtyah Suburb, which 
gave its name to the bridge called the Kantarah- 
al-Y&sirlyah, noted in chapter vi as the highest up 
of those which crossed the Nahr c ls£. The gate 
of this suburb, called the B&b-al-Y&sirlyah, is men- 
tioned by Ibn Hawkal in 367 (a.d. 978) as the limit 
of Baghdad in his time on the west, and he adds 
that five miles of streets separated this point from 
the limit of the houses on the other side, namely 
at the Khur&s&n Gate of East Baghdad. Y&kGt, 
three centuries later, speaks of the YAsirlyah as 
having come to be a village, in his day very famous 
for its gardens, which lay on the *ls4 Canal, one 
mile below the town of Muhawwal, and about two 
miles from Baghdad, the latter distance being 
probably reckoned from the Suburb of the Muhawwal 
Gate. As late as the year 700 (a.d. 1300) the 
Ydsirlyah still existed, and the author of the Mardsid 



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152 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

writes of the fine bridge which, as of old, here 
spanned the c ls4 Canal. It is added that the 
place had originally received its name from a 
man called Y&sir, of whom, however, no details 
are given 1 . 

1 Tabari, iii. 865, 883 to 893; Mas'udi, vi. 445, 446; Ibn Hawkal, 
165 ; Ibn Serapion, 14 ; Yakut, iv. 1002 ; Marasid, iii. 332. 



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CHAPTER XII 

BARATHA, MUHAWWAL, AND THE KAziMAYN 

Baratha and its Mosque : the Old Cemetery and the Gardens of 
Ka'yubah. The Dyers' Garden. The Muhawwal Township and the 
Palace of Mutasim. The Cemetery of the Martyrs and the Tomb of 
Ibn Hanbal. The Cemetery of the Kuraysh and of the Straw Gate. 
The Kazimayn Shrines and the Buyid Tombs. Tombs of Zubaydah 
and the Caliph Arnin. Tomb of v Abd Allah Ibn Hanbal. 

On the banks of the c ls& Canal, immediately 
above the point where the KarkhAyA branched off, 
lay the township of Bar&thA. This is described as 
situated at but ' a short distance ' — say half a mile — 
from Muhawwal ; while, coming out from Baghdad, 
it was immediately beyond the burial ground of the 
Kun&sah, otherwise called the Old Cemetery (Al- 
Makbarah-al-Kadlmah), which stretched from the 
rubbish heaps on the Muhawwal Road down to 
as far as the c ls& Canal above the bifurcation. 
On . the further side of the Karkh&yd Canal and 
running down its right bank from BarAthA as far 
as the Bridge of the Greeks, Ya'kflbt describes a 
succession of gardens, which ended at the Palace (D&r) 
of Ka'yflbah, a native of Ba$rah and surnamed ' the 
Gardener/ which lay opposite the bridge. This 



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154 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Ka'yftbah was celebrated for his plantations of 
date-palms, young trees being brought up the river 
from Ba§rah to Baghdad, where after being thus 
transplanted they became acclimatized, ultimately 
producing most excellent fruit. 

The township of Bar&thA was celebrated for its 
mosque, which to the Shfahs was a much vene- 
rated shrine. The tradition was that the Caliph 
C A1I had halted here in the year 37 (a.d. 657), 
when on his march to fight the Harilrt rebels at 
Nahraw£n, and it was said that c Alt had prayed on 
the spot where the mosque was subsequently built. 
Baghdad of course was only founded a century 
after this date, but Bar&thd was already a flourish- 
ing hamlet, and after his prayers 'All bathed in 
the Hamm&m or hot bath of the village. From 
this period onwards Bardthi obtained celebrity as 
a holy place among the Shlahs, many ascetics coming 
to live in the reed cabins that were built on the 
canal side, and in connexion with these people 
Y&kflt tells an edifying story of a man and woman 
who each had lived at Bar&thi a long life of pious 
renunciation. In course of time a mosque was 
built, where the Shl'ahs used to assemble and 
perform what the Sunnls looked upon as heretical 
rites. Matters continued in this wise down to the 
beginning of the fourth century (the tenth a.d.), 
but in the reign of the Caliph Muktadir the orthodox 
party would no longer tolerate the scandal, the 
Shlahs were finally accused of compassing rebellion, 
and one Friday, the mosque having been surrounded 
by troops, those found there were, by order of the 
Caliph, carried off to prison and severely punished. 
The Shf ah Mosque was then pulled down, and its 



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xii.] Bar&thd, Muhawwal, and Kdzimayn 155 

site included in the grounds of the neighbouring 
Cemetery of the Kun&sah. 

The heterodox services of the ShI'ahs having been 
thus suppressed, the needs of theSunnl population had 
to be supplied, and hence about a quarter of a century 
later, namely in the year 328 (a. d. 940), the Caliph 
Radi gave permission to the Governor of Baghdad, 
who was the Amir Bajkam the Turk, to rebuild 
the old mosque for orthodox worship. The original 
plan was now greatly enlarged, many neighbouring 
houses having been bought in, and the new walls 
were strongly built of kiln-burnt bricks set in 
mortar, the roof being constructed of teak beams 
painted or carved, and the name of the Caliph 
R4dl was inscribed over the entrance. The next 
Caliph Muttakl completed the work, giving orders 
that the pulpit which H&rtin-ar-Rashid had originally 
bestowed on the great mosque of the City of Mansftr — 
and which being out of use had been temporarily 
stored in the mosque treasury — should be taken 
thence, and set up in the new Bar&th& Mosque. 
Further, he appointed the Im&m of the Rusfifah 
Mosque to serve in the new establishment, and the 
Caliph himself in great pomp led the Friday prayers 
when said here for the first time — the people of both 
East and West Baghdad crowding to attend — on 
the second Friday of the month JumAdl I of the 
year 329 (a.d. 941). The Bar&th& Mosque after 
this date was counted as one of the great mosques 
of Baghdad, and continued in use as such down to 
the year 451 (a. d. 1059), when Khattb visited it. 
Subsequently it was again dismantled, and when 
Y&ktit wrote in 623 (a. d. 1126), it had long fallen 
into ruin, and though some traces of the walls 



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156 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

still remained, these were then fast disappearing, 
for the people constantly carried off bricks from 
them to be used in other newer buildings. 

Such is the account given by Khattb and Yikftt ; 
it is to be remarked, however, that at first it appears 
not to have been considered as one of the Baghdad 
mosques. Isfakhri, who wrote his description of 
Baghdad in 340 (a.d. 951), more than ten years, 
therefore, after the date when the Caliph MuttakI is 
said to have completed the restoration of the Bar&thS. 
Mosque, omits all mention of it He says that in 
his day there were only three great mosques for the 
Friday prayers in Baghdad, namely that of the City 
of Manstir on the western side, with the Ru§lfah 
Mosque and that of the Palace for East Baghdad. 
Ibn Hawkal, who wrote in 367 (a.d. 978), is the 
first to mention the Bar&tM Mosque, adding it as 
a fourth to those already named by his predecessor 
I§(akhri, and he mentions that it had originally been 
an oratory dedicated to the Caliph C AH, which 
account confirms that given above from Khattb and 
Y&kftt 1 . 

The Muhawwal Road, after leaving the Kunisah 
Cemetery and passing BarSthi, came on to the town 
of Muhawwal, and the only places mentioned here 
as lying along the highroad are the Tanners' Yards 
(Ad-Dabbighln), which on the further side stretched 
down to the c IsA Canal. The name of Muhawwal, 
as already mentioned, signified the Place of Unload- 
ing, the cargoes of boats that came down the Nahr 

1 The name of Baratha is derived from the Syriac word BroitA, 
meaning 'the outermost'; cf. Frankel, p. xx; Ya'kubi, 244, 251; 
Khatib, folios 101a, b, 102 a, b, 113a; Yakut, i. 532; Istakhri, 84; 
Ibn Hawkal, 165. 



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xii.] Bardthd, Muhawwal, and Kdzimayn 157 

e ts& being here disembarked for subsequent trans- 
port into Baghdad. Y&ktit describes Muhawwal 
in the seventh century (the thirteenth a. d.) as a 
fine township, a league distant from Baghdad, 
surrounded by many gardens where abundance of 
fruit was grown, and it had also excellent markets. 
According to Hamd-Allah, the Persian author of 
the following century, Muhawwal was then two 
leagues distant from the capital, and lay for the 
most part on the western (or as we should count 
it, the northern) bank of the c ls4 Canal. Its gardens 
were continuous with those of West Baghdad, and 
he adds that many of the Abbasid Caliphs had built 
palaces here. Among the rest had been a cele- 
brated pleasure-house (Kdskk or Kiosk) built in 
the early part of the third century (the ninth a. d.) 
for the Caliph Mu'tasim in the highest part of the 
town, so as to be above the reach of the mosquitoes 
which swarmed among the low-lying gardens : these 
insects, it is reported, having been 'bound by an 
incantation, whereby they could not come into that 
building/ 

To distinguish this town from other places of the 
like name, it was called Al-Muhawwal-al-Kabir or 
Great Muhawwal, and though all traces of it have 
apparently now disappeared, Muhawwal was still a 
populous place after the year 700 (a. d. 1300), when 
the author of the Mardsid wrote his epitome of 
Y&ktit, and as late as the year 740 (1339), when 
Hamd-Allah the Persian appears to have visited it \ 

To complete the survey of Western Baghdad, 
some account remains to be given of the grave- 

1 Ibn Serapion, 14; Ya'kubi, 244; Tabari, iii. 890; Yakut, iv. 252, 
432 ; Marasid, iii. 53 ; Nuzhat, 161. 



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158 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

yards which lay on the river bank above the 
northern suburbs, in which the shrines of the 
Kizimayn, still existing, mark the site of the older 
Cemetery of the Kuraysh, so named after the cele- 
brated Arab tribe from which the Prophet and the 
Abbasids alike traced their descent 

It is a Moslem custom to bury the dead near the 
city gates, and beyond the T^hmcl Trench the 
cemetery which lay outside the Harb Gate on the 
road leading to the Kizimayn was celebrated for 
possessing the tomb of the Im&m Ibn Hanbal, 
founder of the Flanbalites, the latest of the four 
orthodox Sunnl sects. This was the Cemetery of 
the Martyrs (Mukibir-ash-Shuhad&), though why 
this graveyard especially should have been so called 
Yiktit confesses ignorance. The Im&m Ibn Flanbal 
took his name from his grandfather (for to be exact, 
he was Ahmad ibn Muhammad Ibn Hanbal), and 
he died at Baghdad during the reign of the Caliph 
Mutawakkil, in the year 241 (a. d. 855), being 
buried in this cemetery at the tlarb Gate in 
presence of an immense concourse of mourners, 
his steadfastness under persecution, in the cause of 
orthodoxy, having won him the unbounded venera- 
tion of the people of Baghdad. In the next century, 
Mukaddasi, writing in 375 (a.d. 985), mentions his 
tomb as that of a most holy man, and Khafib in 
451 (a. d. 1059) speaks of the shrine of Ibn Hanbal 
at the tfarb Gate as a place of pious visitation. 
Close by stood the tombs of two other saints, 
namely of the ascetic Bishr-al-tf&ft, surnamed 
4 Barefoot,' who was the friend of Ibn £1 anbal and 
died in 226 (a. d. 841), and of Man§flr ibn c Ammir 
the Traditionist, who died in 225 (a.d. 840). And 



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xii.] Bardthd, Muhazvwal, and Kdzimayn 159 

these, were three out of the four saintly guardians of 
Baghdad — Ma'rfif Karkhi, already mentioned as 
having his tomb beyond the Ba?rah Gate, making 
up the quartette — whose tombs sanctified the city. 

The tomb of Ibn tfanbal as time elapsed became 
a noted holy place, and among other pious visitors 
the chronicles mention that both the Saljtik Sultan 
M&lik Sh&h and his Wazlr the famous Niz£m-al-Mulk, 
when they were in Baghdad in 479 (a.d. 1086), 
made their devotions here. During the three great 
inundations of Baghdad, namely in the years 466 
(a.d. 1074), 554 (a.d. H59),and 614 (a.d. I2i7),the 
shrine of Ibn tfanbal suffered much damage, which 
was, however, repaired. Both Y&ktit in 623 (a.d. 
1226), and his epitomist the author of the Mardsid 
in 700 (a. d. 1300), mention the tomb of Ibn Hanbal 
as still standing at the tfarb Gate; and Ibn 
Khallik&n, who is of the same century, repeats the 
substance of the foregoing in his biography of the 
Im&m. Ibn Batflfah, who visited Baghdad in 727 
(a.d. 1327), especially describes this shrine as one 
that was still highly venerated by the inhabitants 
of the metropolis. He adds that the cupola over 
the grave of the Imfim, though many times restored, 
had been, as often again, demolished by a super- 
natural power, lest (as the Berber traveller explains 
it) against the will of Ibn Hanbal his tomb should 
become the object of a devotion savouring of 
idolatry \ 

1 A similar miracle is related by Hamd-Allah of the tomb of the 
saint named Taus-al-Haramayn, who is buried near Abarkuh in 
Northern Fars ; see Nuzhat (Bombay Lithograph), p. 174; Ibn Batutah, 
ii. 113, and compare with this Goldziher, i. 257. Mas'udi, vii. 229; 
Mukaddasi, 130 ; Yakut, i. 444 ; iv. 586, 587 ; Marasid, i. 1 12 ; ill- 129 ; 
Khatib, folios 112 a, b ; Ibn Khallikan, No. 19, p. 29 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 



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160 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

To the north of the Cemetery of the Martyrs at 
the Harb Gate, and towards the river bank, stretched 
the great Kuraysh Cemetery, the eastern part of 
which was more especially known as the Cemetery 
of the Straw Gate (Muk&bir B4b-at-Tibn), this 
having opened from the Zubaydlyah Fief near 
here. The graveyard in this region had originally 
been laid out by the Caliph Mansflr, and one of the 
first to be buried here was his own son Ja e far-al- 
Akbar (the elder), who died in the year 150 (a.d. 767). 
This cemetery not long afterwards came to be 
known as that of the Shrine of Kizim, or of the 
Two Kizims (K&zimayn), a name which it still 

62, 103 ; xi. 164; xii. 216. Ibn Jubayr (p. 228), and Ibn Batutab, wbo 
merely copies the account of his predecessor, both speak of the tomb 
of Ibn Hanbal as lying 'close to the quarter of the tomb of Abu 
Hanifah,' and from the context it would appear at first sight as though 
Ibn Jubayr put the shrine of Ibn Hanbal on the eastern or left bank 
of the Tigris. Ibn Jubayr and Ibn Bat Utah, however, mention it 
among other tombs that undoubtedly lay on the west bank, and the 
confusion may have arisen either from a mistake in the MS. or from 
Ibn Jubayr confounding the tomb of Ibn Hanbal at the Harb Gate 
with that of 'Abd-Allah, son of fbn Hanbal, which, as will be men- 
tioned below, was situated close to the west bank of the Tigris, 
immediately opposite the shrine of Abu Hanifah in Rusafah. Further, 
Ibn Jubayr states that Ibn Hanbal lay buried in the immediate 
neighbourhood of the tombs of the two Sufi saints — Hallaj, who was 
put to death in 309 (a.d. 921), and Shibli bis contemporary, who died 
in 334 (A.D. 946)— while Hamd- Allah, writing in 740 (a.d. 1339), 
speaks of both of these tombs in conjunction with that of Ibn Hanbal 
as situated in Western Baghdad (Nuzhat, 149). Ibn Batutah, de- 
scribing the holy places in Western Baghdad, adds that near the tomb 
of Ibn Hanbal stood the shrine of Bishr, surnamed ' Barefoot,' also 
that of Sari-as-Sakaji and Junayd. Hamd- Allah also mentions the 
tomb of Ibn Hanbal in his history called the Guztdah, and there 
speaks of it as lying 'above' (in Persian bdld) the shrine of Abu 
Hanifah, which seems to point again to a confusion between the 
graves of Ibn Hanbal and of his son ' Abd-Allah on the Tigris bank. 
See the fifth book of the Guztdah, ( On the Imams,' under heading 
« Life of Ibn HanbaL' 



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xii.] Bardthd } MuAawwal, and Kdzimayn 161 

bears, in honour of the two Shi'ah Im&ms who 
had been buried here ; while near by were the 
graves of Zubaydah, the widow of H&rtin-ar-Rashld, 
and of her son the Caliph Amln, also the tombs of 
the two Buyid princes, Mu e izz-ad-Dawlah, who died 
in 356 (a.d. 967), and Jal4l-ad-Dawlah, who died in 
435 (a.d. 1044). 

In regard to the two Shi'ah Im&ms who gave 
their names to the K&zimayn shrines, these were : 
Mftsi, surnamed Al-K&zim, * He who restraineth 
his anger/ grandson of the grandson of Husayn, 
son of the Caliph 'AH ; and Muhammad, surnamed 
Al-Jaw&d or At-Takl, ' the Generous ' or * the Pious/ 
grandson of MAs4-al-Kizim aforesaid. The two 
were respectively the seventh and the ninth Shfah 
Im&ms, Mflsd having been put to death by Hirtin- 
ar-Rashld in 186 (a. d. 802), while Muframmad-at- 
Takl died, poisoned, it is said, in 219 (a.d. 834), 
during the Caliphate of Mu f ta§im. These shrines 
of the K&zimayn are also sometimes spoken of as 
standing in the Shflntziyah, which is here therefore 
taken to be synonymous with the Kuraysh burial 
ground, the explanation given by Khaftb being that 
there were two brothers of the name, and that while 
the Kuraysh Cemetery was called after Shfinlzi 
the Less, his elder brother had given his name 
to the graveyard down the Ktifah highroad, already 
described in chapter vi. In later times, however, 
the great northern graveyard of West Baghdad 
was exclusively, known as the Cemetery of the Bib- 
at-Tibn, but, from the position of the Straw Gate, 
this would appear to have been a name more 
properly applied to the eastern part only l . 

1 The anonymous epitomist of Ibn Hawkal, who wrote in 630 

BAGHDAD M 



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ifo Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Who first built the K&zimayn shrines is unknown, 
but Y&ktit describes these in 623 (a. d. 1226) as 
forming a separate walled suburb, inhabited by a 
considerable population, the houses at that date 
lying at a distance from the Tigris bank which 
might be estimated at a good horse gallop, or about 
a thousand yards. The Persian writer tfamd- Allah, 
a century later than Y&ktit, also speaks of the 
K&zimayn as forming a township by itself, measur- 
ing six thousand paces in circumference, the centre 
point of which was occupied by the tombs of the 
Im&ms* In the earlier centuries, during the con- 
stantly recurring riots between the Sunnl and the 
Sht'ah factions of Baghdad, the suburb of the 
K&zimayn naturally became the rallying-place of 
the heterodox party, and when these last were 
discomfited the orthodox mob would plunder the 
shrines. On the other hand, princes of Sht'ah 
tendencies like the Buy ids, frequently enriched the 
sanctuary with gifts, and the Caliph T&i\ who 
reigned from 363 to 381 (a. d. 974 to 991), is stated 
to have acted as Im&m of the Friday prayers on 
more than one occasion in the great mosque of 
the Kizimayn. 

In 443 (a. d. 105 1), as will be described in the 
following paragraph, the shrines were plundered 
and burnt, but the buildings must have been shortly 
afterwards restored, for in 479 (a. d. 1086) they 
were visited by M4lik Sh&h the Saljflk, and in 580 
(a. d. 1 184) again are honourably mentioned by the 
traveller Ibn Jubayr in his description of Baghdad. 

(a.D. 1233), apparently transfers the name of the Kuraysh Cemetery 
to the quarter round the tomb of Abu H an tf ah in Eastern Baghdad ; 
see Ibn Hawkal, 164, note *• 



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xii.] Bardthdy Muhawwal, and Kdzimayn 163 

In 622 (a. d. 1225), during the short reign of the 
Caliph Z&hir, the dome over the shrine of the two 
Im£ms was destroyed by fire, and the Caliph began 
to rebuild it, but dying in the following year it was 
his son and successor Mustansir who completed the 
work. During the great Mongol siege in 656 
(a. d. 1258) the shrines are stated to have been 
plundered and burnt by order of Hill£gti, but sub- 
sequently rebuilt ; and in the year 700 (a. d. i 300), 
when the author of the Mardsid wrote, the mosque 
was still standing near the Tigris bank, though from 
having been twice flooded in the recent inunda- 
tions it had come for the most part to be a ruin \ 

Of the many plunderings which the Kdzimayn 
suffered, perhaps the worst was that consequent 
on the riots of the year 443 (a. d. 105 1), and it 
is on this occasion that the chronicle first mentions 
the tombs of Zubaydah and of her son the Caliph 
Amln, which are described as standing in immediate 
proximity to the Sht'ah shrines. It will be re- 
membered that after the tragic death of Amln, his 
head was cut off and sent to Mamtin in Khurdsdn, 
while his body was hurriedly buried in a garden near 
the Iron Gate (B&b-al-tfadid) on the Tdhirid Trench. 
Zubaydah, with her grandsons, the sons of Amln, 
was at first deported to Hum&ntyah down the 
Tigris, but subsequently appears to have been 
allowed to return to Baghdad, where she died in 
216 (a. d. 831), some seventeen years after the great 
siege, and two years before the death of the Caliph 
Mamtin. Tabarl (copied by all succeeding chroni- 

1 Khatib, folios nib, 113a; Mas'udi, vi. 330; vii. 215; Ibn-al- 
Athir, viii. 425; Fakhri, 379; Yakut, iv. 587; Marasid, ii. 432; 
Rashid-ad-Din, 302, 308 ; Nuzhat, 149. 

M 2 



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164 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

cles), who gives the date of her death, says nothing 
in regard to where she was buried, but it will be 
remembered that the Zubaydlyah Fief, which was 
occupied by her people, lay close to the Straw 
Gate, which opened towards the K&zimayn, and 
hence there is every likelihood of her having been 
buried in this cemetery. 

In the year 443 (a. d. 1051) a dispute broke out 
between the Sunnls and Shfahs of West Baghdad 
in the matter of a gate in Karkh, the Shlahs having 
wished to set above this an inscription in praise 
of the Caliph 'AH, which inscription the Sunnls 
held to savour of rank idolatry. The leader of 
the Sunnls was killed in the riot which attended 
the discussion of this thorny matter, and when his 
friends assembled to bury him in the Cemetery of 
the Martyrs near the tomb of Ibn tfanbal, the riot 
of the previous day was purposely renewed, the 
orthodox party wishing to avenge his death. In 
pursuance of this intention they proceeded to break 
open the neighbouring shrines of the Kizimayn and 
plunder the tombs of the Shl c ah saints. After 
carrying off the gold and silver lamps and the 
curtains which adorned these sanctuaries, the 
rioters on the following day completed their work 
by setting fire to the buildings. The great teak- 
wood domes above the shrines of the Imims 
Mtisi and Muhammad were entirely burnt, and 
the fire spreading to the neighbouring tombs of 
the two Buyid princes, Mu e izz and Jal£l-ad-Dawlah, 
first consumed these structures, together with the 
tomb of Ja'far, son of the Caliph Mansftr, and 
next attacked the tomb of the Caliph Amln and 
of his mother the Princess Zubaydah, the mob 



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xii.] Baratha, Muhawwal, and Kazimayn 165 

meanwhile perpetrating many horrible and impious 
acts. Ibn-al-Athir, who gives us these details, is 
apparently the first authority to record the place 
of burial of Zubaydah, but since there would appear 
to be no reason for doubting the accuracy of his 
information, and that therefore the tomb of Zubay- 
dah near the K&zimayn existed here in the middle 
of the fifth century (the eleventh a. d.), this entirely 
invalidates the attribution of the present, so-called, 
tomb of Zubaydah, a comparatively modern structure 
standing near the tomb of Ma'rflf Karkhi, some three 
miles to the south of the K&zimayn, which will be 
more particularly noticed in the concluding chapter 
of the present work. 

In the Kuraysh Cemetery, or rather in its eastern 
half near the Straw Gate, another celebrated grave 
remains to be mentioned, namely that of c Abd- Allah, 
the son of the Im&m Ibn Hanbal. He died in 290 
(a. d. 903), and was a famous traditionist, emulating 
also the reputation of his father for sanctity. By the 
terms of his will he had enjoined that his body 
should not be buried in the shrine of Ibn Hanbal, 
but outside in the cemetery beyond the Straw Gate. 
Here, according to a well authenticated tradition, 
a prophet (nadt) of some former dispensation had 
been given sepulture, and 'Abd-Allah Ibn tfanbal 
was of opinion that to rest in the neighbourhood 
of a prophet's bones was even better than to be 
buried in the grave of his father the Im&m. The 
tomb, therefore, was made at a place between the 
K&zimayn and the Zubaydlyah Fief, where it 
continued for many centuries to be a place of 
visitation, and in the seventh century (the thirteenth 
a. d.), when Ydkflt wrote, was still standing, though 



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166 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

much in ruin, the surrounding plain being already 
used for arable land, on which corn crops were 
grown. 

In later times a confusion arose between the 
tomb of Ahmad ibn Hanbal and that of his son 
c Abd- Allah ; and when the former shrine fell to 
ruin with the disappearance of the quarter round 
the Harb Gate, the latter tomb must have taken 
its place in the popular veneration. This is first 
indicated by Mirkhwind, who, when describing the 
occupation of Baghdad by Timur in 695 (a. d. 
1296), states that 'the shrine of the Im&m Ahmad' 
having recently become ruined by the rebellious 
floods of the Tigris, Timur gave orders that it 
should be rebuilt; but the tomb in question, from 
its position on the river bank, can only have been 
that of 'Abd-Allah, son of A^mad Ibn Hanbal. 
The confusion would easily have come about from 
the names, for as has already been mentioned, Ibn 
Hanbal the Im&m was not in reality the son of 
Hanbal (as the form of name would imply), but his 
grandson, and Ibn Hanbal thus coming to be used 
as a sort of patronymic, the traditionist c Abd-Allah, 
his son, naturally also came to be sometimes called 
Ibn Hanbal. When, therefore, the tomb of Ibn 
Hanbal the Im&m at the Harb Gate had disappeared, 
the tomb of his son c Abd-Allah took its place, and 
came to be called the tomb of Ibn Hanbal. As 
such it existed, after having been restored by Timur, 
down to about the year a, d. i 750, when Niebuhr in 
describing Baghdad mentions this shrine on the 
Tigris bank (opposite the tomb of Abu Hanlfah in 
East Baghdad) ; and he also incorrectly speaks of it 
as the tomb of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal. It, however, 



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xii.] Bardthd, Muhawwal, and Kdzimayn 167 

then was a complete ruin, the building for the 
most part having been recently carried away by 
the river floods ; hence at the present day nothing 
remains of either the tomb of c Abd-AUah, or of 
that of his father the more celebrated Ahmad Ibn 
Hanbal, which in former times had been among 
the most illustrious shrines of Western Baghdad l . 

1 Mas'udi, vi. 482; Tabari, iii. 934, 1 105; Ibn-al-Athir, be. 395; 
Yakut, i. 443 ; Khatib, folio 112 a ; Mirkhwand, part vi. 66; Niebuhr, 
ii. 248. 



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CHAPTER XIII 



EASTERN BAGHDAD IN GENERAL 

East and West Baghdad and Samarra. The three northern quarters 
of East Baghdad: Rusafah, Shammastyah, and Mukharrim. The 
Eastern Palaces and modern Baghdad. The second Siege : Musta'in 
and the walls on the western and eastern sides. Ya'kubt and Ibn 
Serapion : the highroads of the three northern Quarters. The Canals 
of the eastern side : from the river Khalis and from the Nahr Bin. 
The three Bridges of Boats. The Main Bridge. The Upper Bridge 
and Lower Bridge. The Zandaward Bridge. Executions on the 
Bridges. Upper Bridge dismantled. Later Bridge of the Palaces. 
Numbers of skiffs. Bridge of Kasr Sabur. The modern Bridge. 

The rule of the Abbasids in Baghdad lasted for 
rather more than five centuries — from 146 (a.d. 763), 
when Man§Gr founded the city, to 656 (a.d. 1258), 
when, after the Mongol invasion, the last Caliph 
Musta'§im was put to death by HftldgG — and these 
five centuries are divided into two periods of unequal 
length by an interval of fifty-eight years, during 
which the Caliphs, abandoning Baghdad, lived at 
S4marr&, making this for a time the capital of the 
empire. 

From the foundation of the city to the removal 
of the seat of government to SSmarr& seventy-five 
years had elapsed, and during this first period the 
Caliphs held their court in West Baghdad, on the 



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Eastern Baghdad in General 169 

Arabian side of the Tigris. After the return from 
Sdmarrfi, and during the second period, which lasted 
for close on four centuries, East Baghdad on the 
Persian side of the river became the seat of govern- 
ment; and here the Caliphs built new palaces, a 
new city with suburbs in the course of time grow- 
ing up round these. The chief quarter of modern 
Baghdad also lies on the eastern bank of the Tigris, 
being the outcome of these suburbs which grew up 
after the fourth century (the tenth a.d.) round the 
later palaces of the Caliphs. Every trace of these 
palaces has now almost completely disappeared, but 
the city wall built in the fifth century (the eleventh 
a. d.) to enclose the new suburbs still exists, and 
this, as will be shown later, is virtually identical with 
the present wall of Eastern Baghdad. 

For a hundred years and more, however, after 
the time of Man§flr, these palaces and suburbs not 
having yet come into existence, East Baghdad 
consisted of the three northern quarters which lay 
on the river bank, for the most part outside the 
limit of the later wall, and above the subsequent 
site of the palaces, in the region where the village 
of Mu'azzam now stands. These three northern 
quarters were called Ru§&fah, Shammfislyah, and 
Mukharrim l ; they covered a fan-shaped area of 
ground, which, radiating from the end of the Main 
Bridge, was bounded by a semicircle sweeping 
round from the Tigris above the Upper Bridge 
to the river bank again below the Lower Bridge. 
Starting from the end of the Main Bridge, two 
highroads diverged, one going north, the other 
east, which divided the semicircular area just de- 

1 See Map, No. V. 



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170 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

scribed into three parts ; the northern road, towards 
Mosul, leaving the city limits at the Shamm&slyah 
Gate, while the eastern or Khuris4n road had its 
exit at the Khur&s&n Gate x , going towards Persia, 

The Mahdl Palace in Ru§&fah was the nucleus 
from which East Baghdad developed, and as already 
described in chapter iii, it was founded by Manstir, 
almost contemporaneously with the Round City, to 
be the residence of his son and successor Mahdl. 
It stood near the river bank in the Rusafah Quarter, 
which last occupied a triangular space of ground 
bounded on two sides by a great loop of the Tigris, 
above the Main Bridge, and thus the palace lay to 
the north-west of the bridge. Ru§&fah on the land 
side was bounded by the great northern highroad, 
this dividing it from the Shamm&siyah Quarter, 
which occupied the triangle between the two great 
highroads already spoken of as going north and east 
from the head of the Main Bridge. The limit of 
the Shammislyah Quarter on the third side to the 
north-east was the city wall going up from the 
Khur&sdn Gate to the Shammisiyah Gate on the 
river bank, the Barad&n Gate opening halfway 
between the two. The Mukharrim Quarter lay 
to the south of the Shammisiyah, being divided 
from this last by the eastern or Khur&s&n road. 
The Mukharrim Quarter was bounded on the west 
side by the Tigris from the Main Bridge down to the 
Lower Bridge; while on the third side the limit 
was the quadrant of the city wall going from the 

1 This Khuras&n Gate of East Baghdad must not be confounded 
with the gate of the same name in the Round City, which opened on 
the Main Bridge of Boats. The Khurisan road, within the city, ran 
between the two. 



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xiii.] Eastern Baghdad in General 171 

KhuraLsdn Gate to the Gate of the Tuesday Market 
on the river at the Lower Bridge, the Abraz Gate 
to the south-east lying about halfway between 
the two. 

On the Tigris bank, immediately below the Gate 
of the Tuesday Market, lay the grounds of the 
uppermost of the three later palaces of the Caliphs, 
namely the Firdfts, and below this came the gardens 
of the Hasani and the TAj Palaces. These three 
palaces, as already mentioned, came in after times 
to be surrounded by suburbs and then by the new 
town wall, which at the present day forms the boun- 
dary of the city of East Baghdad ; but as fixing the 
southern limit of the three older or northern quarters 
(these having now almost entirely disappeared), it is 
to be noted that both the Abraz Gate and the Gate 
of the Tuesday Market in the Mukharrim Quarter 
stood within die area afterwards enclosed by the 
wall round the later palace suburbs, so that the 
lower part of the old Mukharrim Quarter over- 
lapped the upper part of the region occupied by 
modern Baghdad 1 . 

A hundred years after the time of Man§tir, and 
about the middle of the period of half a century 
when S&marrS. was the capital, the interval of a year 
occurred during which Baghdad was once again the 
abode of the Caliph, or rather of one of the Caliphs, 
for there were two rival Commanders of the Faithful 
throughout the year 251 (a.d. 865), one in SdmarrA, 
the other in Baghdad. The latter was Musta'ln, 
who, in consequence of a revolt of the Turk body- 
guard, fled for his life from the palace at SdmarrS, 
where Mu'tazz, his cousin, was immediately made 
1 See inset plan to Map No. I. 



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172 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Caliph in his stead. Musta c in, with his adherents, 
travelled down the Tigris, seeking refuge in Baghdad; 
and here, on the appearance of the pursuing army 
from Sfimarri, Musta'ln proceeded to entrench him- 
self in Rus&fah, which became his headquarters and 
the centre of the defence. 

The siege which followed lasted a year, and was 
the second of those celebrated in the history of 
Baghdad, the topography of the city being somewhat 
changed by the circular wall which Musta'ln then 
built to defend the eastern and western quarters. 
In West Baghdad the position of the upper and 
the lower limits of the wall are known, but the course 
followed by the remainder of the semicircle unfor- 
tunately is not specified. The upper end began on 
the Tigris bank at the Gate of the Zubaydah Fief, 
above the Harbour of the T&hirid Trench ; and the 
wall met the river again below at the palace of 
Humayd, at some distance above the Lower Harbour 
of the *lsd Canal. Between these two points the semi- 
circle probably followed first the line of the T^irid 
Trench as far west as the Anb&r Gate, thence 
crossing to include within' its sweep the quarter 
of the Muhawwal Gate, and finally coming down 
the left bank of the c lsd Canal, but not including 
the Lower Harbour: this at least is what may be 
gathered from the accounts of the siege. The 
wall round East Baghdad completed the circle, 
beginning on the Tigris bank opposite to the palace 
of tfumayd, immediately below the Lower Bridge 
of Boats. Passing by the Gate of the Tuesday 
Market, it came to the Abraz Gate on the south- 
east, thence curved north and west, the wall here 
being pierced by the Khur&s&n and Barad&n Gates, 



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xinj Eastern Baghdad in General 173 

till the upper end of the semicircle was reached 
on the Tigris bank at the Shammdsiyah Gate 
opposite to the Upper Harbour, where the semicircle 
on the west side had started \ The wall, therefore, 
included within its circuit the three Bridges of Boats 
crossing the Tigris. 

The description which Ya'kftbl has left us of 
Eastern Baghdad is unfortunately not so full as 
that which he has written of the western city, and 
we have to rely on Ibn Serapion for most of the 
details of the Mukharrim, Shamm&slyah, and Rus&fah 
Quarters. Ya'ktibl, however, though he does not 
mark the relative positions of the various fiefs in 
East Baghdad which he enumerates, does give a 
brief list of the highroads which traversed the 
three northern quarters within the line of Musta'ln's 
wall, which last had been built a quarter of a cen- 
tury only before the time when Ya'ktibl wrote. 
These roads were five in number, not counting the 
great Khurdsin road going from the Main Bridge 
eastward to the Khur&sin Gate; and they enable 
us fairly well to understand the course of the canals 
described by Ibn Serapion. Of the five roads, two 
traversed Ru§afah, namely the 'straight' road to 
the palace and mosque of Mahdt, and the road 
of the Khudayr Market, which must have led to 
the Upper Bridge of Boats. Next came the great 
northern highroad leading to the Shamm&siyah 
Gate, and then the road to the Barad&n Gate. 
The road from the Lower Bridge of Boats up the 
Tigris bank into the Mukharrim Quarter is the 
last road mentioned by Ya'kftbi, this of course 
being on the south side of the great Khurisdn 

1 Ibn Maskuwayh, 580; Tabari, iii. 1551. 



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174 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

highway, which it probably ran into not far from 
the Main Bridge, opposite to where the northern 
road diverged 1 . 

Before proceeding to describe the various quar- 
ters of East Baghdad, it will be convenient to 
summarize the account given by Ibn Serapion of 
the canals which traversed this half of the great 
city, and crossed the highroads which Ya'kfibi has 
mentioned. These canals were all derived indi- 
rectly from the Nahraw&n, the main canal of the 
east bank, which starting under the name of the 
K4tGl of the Chosroes, branched from the Tigris 
at DGr, about one hundred miles above Baghdad. 
Following a much straighter course than that taken 
by the river, the Nahrawfin attained a length of 
over 200 miles, and finally rejoined the Tigris at 
Mddhar&yfi, about one hundred miles below Bagh- 
dad. About halfway down the Nahrawin, and 
somewhat to the northward of due east from 
Baghdad, the great canal traversed Nahraw&n Town, 
and this was the point where the Khur&sdn high- 
road from Baghdad crossed it, going east into 
Persia. From the Nahrawfin Canal, two transverse 
canals or rivers, named respectively the Khdlis and 
the Nahr Bin (or Nahrabln), flowed westwards to 
the Tigris, the first joining the river above Bagh- 
dad, the second below it; and all the canals of 
Eastern Baghdad were offshoots which ramified 
between the Khdlis and the Nahr Bin. 

The Kh4li? left the Nahrawin probably at a 

point near the town of Bdjisrd, and flowed into the 

Tigris at Rlshidtyah, a little above Barad&n, the 

town about three leagues due north of Baghdad 

* YaTcubi, 253. 



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xin.] Eastern Baghdad in General 175 

which gave its name to the city gate. The Nahr 
Bin, on the other hand, left the Nahraw&n Canal 
a short distance above the town of Nahraw&n, and 
flowed out into the Tigris about two leagues below 
Baghdad at the village of Kalw&dhfi. Hence it was 
from the Khfili? that the northern quarters of East 
Baghdad were watered, while the suburbs to the 
south were traversed by the Nahr Bin offshoots. 

From the Kh&lis a canal branched, running south, 
called the Nahr-al-Fadl, which flowed into the Tigris 
near the Shamm&styah Gate, in the upper part of 
East Baghdad. Immediately before reaching this 
gate, however, two canals, which subsequently 
uniting formed a loop, branched together from the 
Fadl Canal, these supplying Rus&fah and the Sham- 
mfislyah Quarters. One, called the Canal of the 
Wall, went round outside the quadrant of the city 
wall from the Shamm£slyah Gate past the Baradin 
Gate to the Gate of Khurfisdn ; here it was joined 
by the second, called the Mahdl Canal, which 
having entered the city at the Shammftslyah Gate, 
first threw off a channel that went into Ru§dfah, 
and next curving eastwards to the Khur&sfin Gate, 
passed out through this, flowing into the Canal of 
the Wall. Outside the town their united waters 
were further augmented by the inflowing of the 
Ja'farl Canal (or Nahr-al-Ja'farlyah), an offshoot 
from the parent stream of the Nahr Facll, from 
which it had branched at some distance to the north 
of the ShammAslyah Gate ; and the stream of the 
Ja'farl Canal, through either the Canal of the Wall 
or the Mahdl Canal, flowed back into the Nahr Fadl, 
from which it had originally derived its waters \ 

1 Ibn Serapion (p. 23) is surely mistaken in representing the Mahdl 



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176 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Coming now to the Mukharrim Quarter and the 
palaces in the southern part of East Baghdad, these 
were watered by the Mfls& Canal and its offshoots, 
the Nahr Mfts& being a derivative of the Nahr Bin. 
Not far from the right bank of the Nahr Bin, and 
lying at some distance outside the walls of East 
Baghdad, there was a great palace of the Caliph 
Mu tadid, called Ath-Thur&y& (the Pleiades), which 
will be more fully noticed in a later chapter. The 
MfisA Canal bifurcated to the west from the Nahr 
Bin above the Palace of the Pleiades, through 
which it flowed, and after irrigating the palace 
gardens passed out to the place known as the 
' Divide/ where its waters parted to form three 
canals. 

The canal to the right, or the western branch, 
which retained the name of the Nahr MtisA, had the 
longest course of the three ; its many branch canals 
ramified through the Mukharrim Quarter, which its 
main stream also traversed, and curving round this 
district, crossed the road going down from the Main 
Bridge to the Gate of the Tuesday Market, and 
finally flowed out into the Tigris at the Garden 
of Zathir, some distance to the south of the bridge- 
head. The second or midmost canal from the 
Divide was called the Nahr Mu c all4; it entered 
the city at the Abraz Gate, and passing out again 
near the Gate of the Tuesday Market, flowed into 
the Tigris at the uppermost of the palaces of the 



Canal as flowing out of the Fadl Canal at the Shammasfyah Gate. If 
water flowed down the Ja'fari, the Mahdi Canal must have flowed 
into the Nahr Fadl, as did also the Canal of the Wall, for the two 
combined could only serve to discharge the waters of the Ja'fari Canal 
back into the Nahr Fadl, with which it thus formed a loop. 



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xin.] Eastern Baghdad in General 177 

Caliphs, known as the Firdfls. Ibn Serapion gives 
no special name to the third or lowest canal from 
the Divide, but for convenience it may be called 
the Canal of the Palaces. Turning off to the south, 
it watered the grounds of the two palaces of the 
Caliphs — called respectively the Hasanl and the 
T&j — flowing out finally into the Tigris, immediately 
below the TAj Palace. 

Thus, to recapitulate, Eastern Baghdad, in its 
northern quarters, was watered by the ramifications 
of the Mahdl, Ja'fari, and Wall Canals, these forming 
a great loop taken from the Nahr Fadl, a derivative 
of the Kh4li§ ; while the southern quarters were 
traversed by the three canals from the Divide of 
the MGs& Canal, which was itself a derivative of the 
Nahr Bin : both the Khdlis and the Nahr Bin being 
offshoots from the great Nahraw&n Canal \ 

Before proceeding to describe the eastern quar- 
ters in detail, it will be convenient to state in the 
present chapter what is known of the various bridges 
of boats which crossed the Tigris, forming the lines 
of communication between the eastern and the 
western halves of the great city. 

The Tigris at Baghdad, where the river is on 
an average more than 250 yards wide, has never 
been spanned (at least in Moslem times) by any 
structure more permanent than a bridge of boats. 
Such a bridge is in Arabic generally known under 
the name of Jisr, in distinction to a masonry bridge 
of arches called a Kanfarah, such as was built to 
cross a canal. Bridges of boats are, of course, easily 
broken up and shifted up or downstream to meet 
the needs of traffic, but in the earlier times, and 

1 Ibn Serapion, 19 to 23. 

BAGHDAD N 



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178 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

as late as the middle of the fifth century the (eleventh 
a. d.), there appear to have been three such bridges 
(Upper, Main, and Lower) permanently set for crossing 
the Tigris, and the positions of these do not appear 
to have materially varied, all three having been 
included within the line of walls (described p. 172) 
built by Musta'in. From the earliest times the 
middle or Main Bridge was traversed by the great 
eastern highroad that led from the Khur&sdn Gate 
of the Round City of Mansftr to the Khur&sin 
Gate in the city wall of the three northern quarters. 
The Main Bridge had at its western end the Khuld 
Palace and the great review ground, while the arched 
gate called the Bib-af-Tfik was at the eastern end 
of the bridge, this opening directly into the great 
market street of East Baghdad, from which the 
chief thoroughfares branched. 

The second or Upper Bridge crossed immediately 
below the Upper Harbour to the Shammdsiyah 
Quarter, being reached from the western side 
by the highroad which left the Round City at 
the Syrian Gate, traversing the Harblyah Quarter. 
At the eastern end of the Upper Bridge was the 
Bridge Gate (B£b-al-Jisr), which is often mentioned 
during the two earlier sieges of Baghdad, namely 
under Amln in the year 198 (a. d. 814), and in the 
time of Musta c ln in 251 (a. d. 865), on which latter 
occasion it is reported that this Upper Bridge, then 
consisting of twenty boats, was set on fire by the 
enemy and entirely destroyed. After the middle 
of the fourth century (the tenth a. d.) the great 
Palace of the Buyids was built in the Shammdslyah, 
occupying the region on the eastern bank, to which 
the Upper Bridge more immediately gave access. 



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xxiij Eastern Baghdad in General 179 

The third or Lower Bridge — which Ya'kftbl calls 
the first bridge (Al-Jisr-al-Awwal) and Mas'ftdt 
(apparently) ' the new bridge ' — according to Khatib 
had originally been laid down by Man§tir at the 
time when he built the Khuld Palace in 157 
(a.d. 774). It is described as starting from near 
the Barley Gate on the west side, which must have 
stood near the lower end of the Khuld Gardens 
on the road coming from the H arrfinl Archway, from 
which point the bridge crossed to the Mukharrim 
Quarter, within the Gate of the Tuesday Market, 
from whence, as Ya'kflbt describes it, the road 
coming over from Western Baghdad went up the 
Tigris bank before reaching the Pitched Gate. 
Thus the western end of the Lower Bridge must 
have been moored at a point immediately below 
the mouth of the $arfit Canal, in the quarter after- 
wards known as the Tustarlyln, but its exact position 
depends on that of the Barley Gate, the site of which 
is somewhat uncertain. 

Besides these three permanent bridges of the early 
period, there was a fourth bridge of boats temporarily 
established by the Caliph Amln, which is described 
as 4 double,' and which crossed the river considerably 
below the Lower Bridge. This was called the 
Zandaward Bridge, and probably led to the palace 
which Amln had built for himself near the Zanda- 
ward Monastery, at the place which in after times 
came to be occupied by the Kalw&dhfi Gate of later 
Eastern Baghdad 1 . 

1 The name in the MSS. of Khatib is spelt ZandarHd^ but this 
appears to be a clerical mistake for Zandaward, which will be 
described in a later chapter. Ya'kubi, 248, 254; Mas'udi, ix. 4; 
Khatib, folios 107 a, b ; Tabari, iii. 906 ; Ibn-al-Athir, vi. 193 ; vii. 
97, "5. 

N 2 



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180 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

In the days of H&rtin-ar-Rashid and his more 
immediate successors, when plots and rebellions 
were rife in the empire, the bridges of boats were 
used as convenient places for public executions ; 
here great offenders were crucified, and the heads 
of rebels were exposed on the poles as a warning to 
passers-by. Incidentally, we thus have frequent 
mention in the chronicles of these bridges. In the 
reign of H&rfin, for instance, when Ja'far the Barme- 
cide had fallen from power and been put to death by 
the Caliph, his body, after being divided into three 
parts, was gibbeted on stakes set up in the middle 
of each of the three bridges. Again, during the reign 
of Mu'tadid in the year 280 (a. D.f 93), the dead body 
of Shamilah was crucified ' between the two bridges of 
Western Baghdad ' ; and according to Mas'tidi the heads 
of other rebels were also exposed in this same year 
* on the bridge/ In 283 (a. d. 896) it is reported that 
the scaffolding, bearing the roadway above the boats 
forming the Upper Bridge, suddenly gave way under 
the press of people, and more than a thousand deaths 
followed from those who, falling into the water, were 
drowned. Lastly, not to mention other instances, in 
the year 289 (a. d. 902) Wa§lf the Eunuch, who had 
revolted some eight years before, was finally captured, 
and after being brought a prisoner to Baghdad had 
suddenly died in prison ; by order of the Caliph 
Mu'tadid his body was partially embalmed in resin, 
and then surmounted by the decapitated head was 
exposed on the bridge, where it remained gibbeted 
for over ten years, until at length, during a tumult, 
it was taken down and tossed into the Tigris *. 

These three Bridges (Upper, Main, and Lower) 

1 Yakubi, History -, ii. 510; Mas'udi, viii. 142, 143, 170. 



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xiii.] Eastern Baghdad in General 181 

appear to have existed, with only temporary inter- 
ruptions, down to the middle of the fourth century 
(the tenth a. d.), when the period of the Buyid 
supremacy began. Shortly after this, however, the 
Upper Bridge was dismantled, for both I§takhri in 
340 (a. d. 951), and Ibn Hawkal in 367 (a. d. 978), 
report that only two bridges of boats existed in 
their day, and Khatlb mentions that the Upper 
Bridge, near the Mayd&n of Mu c izz-ad-Dawlah 
the Buyid, had before his time been brought 
down the river to be moored between the review 
ground and the B&b-at-T&k, in other words it was 
set to form part of the Main Bridge. With the ruin 
of the Rusfifah Quarter, the Upper Bridge, which 
crossed from the Harblyah to the Shamm£slyah, 
would naturally have fallen out of use, coming to be 
dismantled ; and thus in 450 (a.d. 1058), when Khatlb 
wrote his history of Baghdad, there were, as he says, 
only two bridges of boats, namely the Main Bridge 
at the B&b-at-T&k of the Khur&s&n highroad, and 
the Lower Bridge, which he describes as beginning at 
the Mashraat-al-KattAnln (the Wharf of the Cotton- 
merchants). 

The position of the Lower Bridge appears to 
have been slightly shifted several times during the 
earlier half of this century. Khaftb says that in 448 
(a.d. 1056) it had been moored between the Mash- 
raat-al-Haftabtn (the Woodcutters' Wharf) of East 
Baghdad and the Mashra'at-ar-Raw&yi (the Wharf 
of the Water-jars) of the western city ; but that in 
the year 450 it had been removed to the position 
which he describes, opposite the Wharf of the 
Cotton-merchants. Khatlb further informs us that 
the Lower Bridge, as early as the year 383 (a.d. 993), 



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182 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

had already been temporarily moored at the Cotton- 
merchants' Wharf, but that soon after this date it 
had been dismantled, and then, until the year 448, 
there had been only the Main Bridge in use. Of 
these various wharfs, however, nothing further 
appears to have been recorded, and it is hence 
impossible to fix the various positions that the 
Lower Bridge occupied. Thus throughout the earlier 
half of the fifth century (the eleventh a.d.) only 
the Main Bridge was in use, as Khatib reports, and 
this is confirmed by what is said in the chronicle 
of a riot which took place during the reign of the 
Caliph I£4im in 422 (a.d. 1031), when the (single) 
bridge giving communication between the eastern 
and western halves of the city had to be cut, in order 
to separate the contending factions of Shfahs and 
Sunnls who inhabited, respectively, Karkh and the 
quarters of East Baghdad 1 . 

Khatib wrote in the middle of the fifth century 
(the eleventh a.d.), and in the second half of this 
century great changes took place in East Baghdad, 
which will be fully described in subsequent chapters. 
These changes resulted in the building of the city 
of Baghdad as we now see it, for the three older 
northern quarters of Ru§4fah, Shamm&slyah, and 
Mukharrim, with their city wall, having fallen to 
ruin, new suburbs sprang up round the palaces of 
the Caliphs during the reign of Muktadl, and in 488 
(a.d. 1095) h* s successor Mustazhir surrounded these 

1 Istakhri, 84 ; Ibn Hawkal, 165. In Khatib compare the British 
Museum MS., No. 1507, folios 107 a, b, with the Paris MS., No. 2128, 
folios 36 a, b, which in many cases gives better readings. Ibn-al-Athir, 
ix. 285 bis. Khatib derived his information about the bridges from 
Abu 'Alt ibn Shadhan, who died in 420 (a.d. 1029), and from Hilal 
ibn al-Muhsin, who died in 448 (a.d. 1056). 



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xni.] Eastern Baghdad in General 183 

new suburbs by a wall, virtually identical with the 
one which now encloses modern Baghdad The 
bridges of boats which had given access to the three 
northern quarters were naturally out of position for 
the new town, and probably before the close of the 
fifth century (the eleventh a. d.) a single bridge of 
boats at the palaces of the Caliphs was established. 
This Palace Bridge is mentioned by the writers of the 
sixth century (the twelfth a. d.) and by Y&ktit at the 
beginning of the following century in such terms as to 
lead to the conclusion that it was identical in position 
with the single Bridge of Boats now in existence. 

The first mention of the Palace Bridge appears to 
be that found in the account written by the epitomist 
of Ibn Hawkal, more than a century after the date of 
Khatib, namely about the year 568 (a. d. i i 73), who 
states that there was in his day but one bridge, con- 
sisting of boats held together by iron chains, which 
served as the communication between the eastern 
and the western parts of the city. Nearly a score of 
years later, when Ibn Jubayr visited the city in 580 
(a.d. i 184), this bridge had been recently carried 
away by the floods, and the people, instead of 
resetting the moorings of the pontoon boats, had 
taken tp the custom of crossing the Tigris in skiffs. 
Ibn Jubayr writes that both night and day the 
passage was thus made by men and women alike, 
who took great amusement therein. Referring to 
the earlier years of the sixth century (the twelfth 
a.d.), he adds that before his date there had been 
two bridges in use, namely the one at the palace of 
the Caliphs, which had been so recently carried away, 
and a second above this (doubtless the older Main 
Bridge opposite the "Atfudt Hospital), but that even 



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184 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

with both these passages for crossing the river on 
foot, the number of those wishing to pass over had 
always been so great that the boatmen were con- 
stantly employed ferrying the people over in their 
skiffs. In this matter Khatlb, in the previous 
century, has already remarked on the very profitable 
business done by boatmen of Baghdad, and he gives 
his authority for the statement that in the time 
when Muwaffak (brother of the Caliph Mu'tamid) 
was governor of Baghdad — he died in 278 (a.d. 891) 
— there were 30,000 of the boats called sumayrtyah 
then in use, the toll at the rate of three pieces 
of silver for each skiff producing 90,000 dirhams 
daily, a sum amounting to between ^3,000 and 
;6*4>ooo. 

From what Ibn Jubayr writes, and from several 
incidental notices in the works of YSkAt, it appears 
that the western end of this Bridge of Boats crossing 
to the palaces of the Caliphs must have been moored 
on the Tigris bank in the quarter of the c fs4 Palace, 
which was on the left bank of the Lower Harbour, 
at the mouth of the c lsi Canal. Along the right 
bank, on the southern side of this harbour, lay the 
Kurayyah Quarter, and this (as expressly stated 
by Ibn Jubayr) also was not far distant from this 
bridge, which according to Fakhri was restored, 
or rebuilt, by the Caliph Zihir in the year 622 
(a.d. 1225), a deed rendered famous by the pane- 
gyrics of his court poets. This bridge, as already 
said, was probably first set up at the close of the 
fifth century (the eleventh a. d.), but it is curious to 
find that Bal&dhurt (a writer of the middle of the 
third century a. h.), describing the conquests of 
the Moslems in Mesopotamia after the death of the 



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xiii.] Eastern Baghdad in General 185 

Prophet, states that the Arab troops at this date 
crossed the Tigris by a bridge of boats moored in 
front of Kasr SibGr (the Palace of Sapor), which, he 
adds, 'stood in the place where nowadays the 
Kasr c ls£ stands.' It is evident, therefore, that in 
the times of the Persian monarchs a bridge of boats 
had existed at the very spot where the later Bridge 
of the Palaces was established nearly five hundred 
years after their time K 

Immediately prior to the Mongol siege of Baghdad 
in 656 (a. d. 1258) the bridge in front of the palaces 
of the Caliphs must have been dismantled, for 
Musta'sim and his people shut themselves up in 
East Baghdad, evacuating the western quarters, 
which were forthwith occupied by the army that 
HGl&gG sent to cross the Tigris above the city. After 
the sack, however, the bridge at the palaces was 
restored, as also (possibly at a later date) one of the 
upper bridges, for when Ibn Batfltah visited Baghdad 
in 727 (a. d. 1327) he found two bridges of boats, 
one opposite the palaces, and the other higher 
up, which probably occupied the position of the 
older Main Bridge at the "Adudl Hospital. These 
bridges, Ibn Batfltah adds, were constructed 'like 
the one at Hillah,' and this he has described on 
a previous page as ' a bridge laid on boats connected 
together and so ordered that they stretch" from one 
side of the river to the other, being held by iron 
chains that are attached on either bank to great 
piles driven firmly into the ground.' The bridge of 
boats which at the present day spans the Tigris at 
Baghdad, according to the traveller Ker Porter, 

1 Ibn Hawkal, 163, note e; Ibn Jubayr, 226, 227 ; Khatib, folio 108 b ; 
Yakut, iv. 839 ; Mushtarik, 350; Baladhuri, 249; Fakhri, 379. 



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186 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

measures 670 feet from bank to bank; Abraham 
Parsons, on the other hand, gives the length as 
871 feet, the roadway being carried over thirty-five 
pontoon boats; and it seems probable that this 
modern bridge, as already stated, occupies the 
position of the one described by Y&ktit shortly 
before the Mongol siege 1 . 

1 Ibn Batutah, ii. 97, 105 ; Ker Porter, Travels, ii. 255 ; Parsons, 
Travels, 118. 



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CHAPTER XIV 
ru?Afah 

The foundation of Rusafah. The Mosque and Palace of Mahdf. 
'Askar-Mahdf and the Causeway. The Shrine of Abu Hanffah. 
The Cemetery of Khayzuran. The Tombs of the Caliphs. Later 
history of the Mosque of Mahdi. The two highroads in Rusifah. 
The Straight Road and the Road of the Maydan. The Khudayrfyah 
Quarter and Market The Upper Bridge of Boats. 

Our authorities differ in regard to the date of 
the foundation of Ru§ifah. Ya'ktibl, the earliest 
of these, gives the year 143 (a.d. 760) as that in 
which Mahdt began to erect buildings here: but 
at this time his father Mansflr had not yet laid 
the foundations of Western Baghdad. The more 
generally accepted account gives the date of 151 
(a.d. 768), in the month ShawwSl of which year the 
Caliph Man§Ar with all his nobles went out from 
the new city to receive Mahdt, the heir-apparent, 
on his victorious return from Khur&s&n at the head 
of the army. The Caliph had assigned the eastern 
Tigris bank, opposite the Round City, to the troops 
for a camping-ground, and here in anticipation of 
his son's coming he had caused a palace to be 
built. 



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1 88 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

The question of these various dates is not very 
material, and probably the difference arises from 
the fact that the great mosque of Rusifah may 
have been founded as early as 143, while the palace 
and the houses and fiefs that came to surround it 
were only begun when Mahdl returned from his 
Persian expedition. The historian Tabarl reports 
that MansGr caused his son to camp in RusAfah 
with his army, in order to keep the heir-apparent 
safely at arms length ; and further to be able, should 
need arise, promptly to quell any feuds that might 
break out among his Arab troops in the garrison of 
the Round City — these being of the rival Yamanite 
and Mudarite tribes — by aid of the Persian soldiers 
from KhuriLsAn, who thus camping apart would be 
more entirely under the orders of the Caliph. The 
building of Ru§&fah was not completed till the year 
159 (a.d. 776), that is to say in the second year after 
Mahdl had succeeded to the Caliphate. The great 
mosque by all accounts had been the first building 
to be erected in Rus&fah, the palace coming later ; 
and as a consequence, it is especially noted that the 
Kiblah point (towards Mecca) of this mosque was 
more exactly oriented than the Kiblah in the great 
mosque of the Round City, which had had to con- 
form to the plan of the previously built Palace of 
Man§tir, on which it abutted; and further, the 
Ru§4fah Mosque was larger and more beautiful than 
the mosque of the City of Man§tir '. 

Near the mosque stood the palace, generally 

1 According to Yakut (iii. 279) the Rusafah Mosque was also called 
Ash-Sharkiyah, or ' the Eastern/ from a village of this name that had 
originally occupied its site, and which, in time, came to be included in 
part of Rusafah. 



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xiv.] Rusd/ah 189 

called the Ka§r-al-Mahdl after its founder. One 
authority, however, states that the Palace of Rusifah 
was built by H&rtin-ar-Rashtd, more probably it was 
only restored by him, or possibly he had enlarged 
the buildings of his father. The Palace of Mahdt 
was originally surrounded by a wall with a ditch, 
and close to it was the Mayd&n or Great Square. 
The gardens surrounding it were watered by the 
Mahdl Canal ; and part of these grounds are men- 
tioned under the name of the Bustdn tfaf§ (the 
Garden of Haf§) with the pool (Birkah) into which 
the waters of one branch of the Mahdl Canal were 
discharged. From the description of this canal and 
of the roads through Rusfifah, we may conclude 
that the palace and gardens lay near the Tigris 
bank, while on the land side stood the mosque, and 
the Maydin was beyond this again, near the road 
leading to the Upper Bridge 1 . 

The new quarter was at first known as 'Askar- 
al-Mahdt (Mahdi's Camp), but Ar-Ru§4fah (the 
Causeway) became its more general name, this last 
having reference presumably to a causeway which 
had carried the road across the swampy ground 
formed within the loop of the Tigris by the inflowing 
streams which, after being canalized, supplied the 
waters of the Nahr Mahdl. The ground here lay 
at a lower level than that on the other bank of the 
Tigris, where the City of Man§Ar was built, the 
difference amounting to from two to three ells, as 
was shown by the levels run in order to settle this 
point, which had become matter of dispute between 
the Caliph Mu c ta§im and his Waztr, Ibn Abl Dfifld. 

1 Istakhri, 83; YaTcubi, 251; Tabari, iii. 322, 364, 365, 366; Ibn 
Serapion, 23 ; Yakut, ii. 783. 



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190 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

But though low-lying as compared with the west 
bank, Rusdfah and all Eastern Baghdad, which spread 
behind it and to the southward, lay well above the 
ordinary level of the Tigris flood. Istakhri in the 
fourth century (the tenth a.d.) further declares that 
the habitations of Eastern Baghdad, as well as the 
gardens of the later palaces of the Caliph, derived 
their water entirely through the canals brought from 
the Nahrawdn (as described in the previous chapter), 
seeing that except for a small quantity that was 
raised for irrigation purposes from the Tigris by 
water-wheels (DGl4b), water was not obtainable 
from the river bed, the level there being too low l . 

In the earlier accounts Ru§4fah is described as 
standing on the eastern Tigris bank, opposite and 
as it were balancing the City of Man§flr on the 
western side, which last it equalled in area. Writing 
in the fourth century (the tenth a.d.) Ya'ktibt 
enumerates in great detail the various fiefs which 
Mahdt had granted to his nobles in the space round 
the Palace of Rus&fah, and these fiefs covered the 
lands to the north-east and south, which afterwards 
were occupied by the quarters of Shammftslyah and 
Mukharrim. Adjacent to the Ru§ifah Mosque, and 
somewhat above it towards the river bank, stretched 
the great cemetery, where in after times stood the 
tombs of the later Abbasid Caliphs, while further 
to the north again was the tomb of Abu Hanlfah 

1 Khatib, folio 78 b ; Istakhri, 84. ' Rusafah' was a name common 
to many places where there had been 'causeways'; Yakut in his 
Mushtarik mentions eleven. There was another town of this name in 
Mesopotamia, near Wasif (see Ibn Serapion, p. 45), but perhaps the 
most celebrated Rusafah after that of Baghdad was the Rusafah near 
Cordova, built by 'Abd-ar-Rahman, the first Amir of the Spanish 
Omayyads. 



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xiv.] Ru§&fah 191 

the Imim, forming the centre of a quarter to which 
in after times it gave its name. 

The Imim Abu Hanlfah was the founder of the 
Hantfites, the earliest of the four orthodox sects 
of the Sunnls. As has already been mentioned, 
he aided Mansflr in the building of Baghdad, and 
dying shortly after this, namely about the year 1 50 
(a.d. 767), was buried in what came afterwards to be 
known as the Cemetery of Khayzurin, to the north 
of Rusifah. Mukaddasi saw his tomb here in the 
year 375 (a.d. 985), and describes this as having 
recently had a portico (SuffaK) added to it by one 
of the learned men of the day named Abu Ja'far 
az-Zammim. A century later, in 479 (a.d. 1086), 
when the SaljGk Sultan Malik ShSh, with the WazJr 
Nizdm-al-Mulk, were in Baghdad, they visited the 
shrine of Abu Hantfah, over which, in 459 (a.d. 
1067), a dome had been built Shortly before this 
also a college was founded, adjacent to the shrine, 
for the teaching of tfantfite law, by one of the 
Saljtik Secretaries of State to Alp Arslin, the father 
and predecessor of M&lik Shih l . The traveller Ibn 
Jubayr found this dome still standing when he 
visited Baghdad in 580 (a.d. 1184) ; it was a white 
cupola, rising high in the air, and he adds that the 
shrine had given its name to the surrounding suburb. 
This quarter of Abu Hanifah Ibn Jubayr describes 
as occupying in his day the uppermost part of 
Ru§&fah, far outside the city limits, as these had 

1 Hamd- Allah, on the other hand, says that this 'high building' 
was the work of the Mustawfi-al-Mamalik or Provincial Treasurer, 
named Sharaf-al-Mulk Abu-Rida, who had been in the service of 
Malik Shah. See the British Museum MS. of the Nushat, Add. 16736, 
folio 148b; but this passage is wanting in other MSS., and in both 
the printed and the lithographed texts of the Nuzhat. 



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192 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

then come to be by the building of the new wall 
(by the Caliph Mustazhir) round the suburbs of 
the palaces. 

Yiktit, in the next century, speaks of the mosque 
of Abu Hanifah as adjoining the tombs of the 
Caliphs at Rus&fah, and Ibn Batflfah, who visited 
Baghdad in 727 (a.d. 1327), describes the shrine 
(Z&wiyah) of Abu Hantfah, stating that a dole of 
food was here distributed daily to all comers — this, 
says Ibn Baftifah, being the only place in Baghdad 
where, at that time, such charity was still main- 
tained. The tomb of Abu tfantfah was visited in 
the middle of the last century by the traveller 
Niebuhr, whose description will serve equally well 
for the shrine seen at the present time. It stands in 
the village of Mu'azzam, so called, says Niebuhr, from 
the name Al-A'zam, ' the Venerated* or ' Honoured,' 
the title which the Sunnls have given to Abu 
Hanlfah. The village is situated a half-hour distant 
to the north of the present city gate, called the Bib 
Mu'azzam, and it lies on the east bank of the Tigris, 
opposite to the tombs of the KAzimayn on the western 
side. From a topographical point of view the shrine 
of Abu hlanlfah is of much importance, since it is 
one of the few places now extant in East Baghdad 
which date from the Caliphate of Manstir \ 

The Cemetery of Khayzur&n, in which this tomb 
of Abu Hanlfah was the most important shrine, 
was called after Khayzur&n (Bamboo-stem), wife of 
the Caliph Mahdl, and the mother of his sons Hfidl 

1 Mukaddasi, 130; Ibn Jubayr, 228; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 37, 103; Ibn 
Khallikan, No. 775, p. 83 ; Yakut, ii. 783 ; Ibn Batutah, ii. 1 12 ; Niebuhr, 
ii. 240. This suburb of Abu Hanifah must not be confounded with 
the suburb of Hantfah (or of Abu Hanifah) in Western Baghdad, near 
the rjarim of fahir, already described, p. 117. 



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xiv.] Rusafah 193 

and HSrfkn-ar-Rashld. There had been a grave- 
yard here belonging to the Magians, already before 
the foundation of Baghdad, and this became the 
first Muslim cemetery of the eastern city, the tomb 
of Ibn Ishik, the earliest biographer of the Prophet 
Muhammad, being among its notable shrines \ 

Between the shrine of Abu Hanffah and the 
Rusifah Mosque stood the buildings erected over 
the tombs of the later Caliphs of the Abbasid 
dynasty. Their graves, it would appear, were still 
to be seen here as late as the year 727 (a.d 1327), 
a list of thirty-two Caliphs being then given by the 
traveller Ibn Batfltah, who asserts that each tomb- 
stone at this time still bore the name of the Caliph 
who lay buried beneath. It is, however, difficult 
to understand how this could have been the case, 
since when the Mongol army sacked Baghdad in 
656 (a.d. 1258) the city was set on fire, and the 
tombs of the Caliphs are expressly stated to have 
all been burnt 2 . Further, Ibn BatGtah could not 
possibly have seen in Rus&fah the graves of Mahdt 
and of H4dl, as he asserts, for they had been buried 
far away from Baghdad; while the eight Caliphs 
from Mu'tasim to Mu'tamid, whose names also occur 

1 Khatib, folios 113 a, b, 1 16 a, b; Marasid, i. 378. It is worth 
noting that Yakut nowhere mentions the Khayzuran Cemetery by 
name, though he frequently refers to the tomb of Abu Hanffah. 
The cemetery of the Kuraysh, as already described in chapter xii, lay 
on the western bank of the Tigris, opposite Rusafah, and adjoining 
the Kazimayn shrines. From some confusion, however, the name of 
the Kuraysh Cemetery after the middle of the sixth century (the tenth 
a.d.) is by some authorities applied to the Rusafah graveyard in East 
Baghdad, which lay round the shrine of Abu Hanifah. 

* Rashid-ad-Din, 308. Perhaps, however, they were subsequently 
restored by order of Hulagu, as is stated to. have been the case with 
the great mosque of the Caliph's Palace and the shrine of the Imam 
Musi at the Kazimayn. 

BAGHDAD O 



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194 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

in his list, were those who lived at Simarri, where 
each was buried in N the gorgeous sepulchre which 
his successor caused to be built. Hence the list 
which Ibn Bafflfah gives can only be exact for the 
later Caliphs. After their return from Simarri, 
however, the Abbasids from Mu'tadid onwards were 
(with a few exceptions) buried in either East or 
West Baghdad; and, beginning with Ridi and 
Mustakfl, the sepulchres of fourteen Caliphs occu- 
pied the courts outside the Ru§4fah Mosque, which, 
from the middle of the fourth century (the tenth 
a. d.) onwards, came to be a city of the dead, standing 
aloof from the neighbouring inhabited quarters. 
The penultimate Caliph Mustansir, between the 
years 623 and 640 (a.d. 1226 and 1242), surrounded 
the cemetery by a strong wall built of burnt bricks ; 
and at this time the royal tombs were of imposing 
appearance, being kept in good repair, the rents 
of certain lands having been allotted for the pay of 
custodians and the expenses of up-keep l . 

1 Ibn Batutah, ii. 1 1 1 ; Marasid, i. 472. The list of the tombs of 
the Caliphs buried in Baghdad is given by Yakut in one article 
(ii. 783), and those buried at Samarra in another (iii. 22). The 
details, however, are not quite exact, as a reference to Ibn-al-Athir 
and other authorities proves, and the following list may serve to 
correct these inaccuracies. Of the thirty-seven Abbasid Caliphs, the 
first fifteen, as the annalists remark, were none of them buried inside 
Baghdad. The Caliph Safiah, the founder of the dynasty, was buried 
in his palace at Anbar; Mans Or died on the pilgrimage, and was 
buried at the well called Bir Maymun in Arabia ; Mahdi died while 
on the march from Baghdad into Media, at the village called Ar-Radhdh, 
in the province of Masabadhan, and was buried there under a walnut- 
tree ; Had! was buried in the garden of 'I sabad, a village owned by 
his brother *lsa in the suburb outside Eastern Baghdad (not technically 
included within the city limits), the exact position of which, however, 
is unknown ; Harun-ar-Rashid died and was buried at Tus or Meshed 
in Khurasan; in regard to the unfortunate Amtn, after being decapi- 
tated in the garden outside the Anbar Gate of West Baghdad, the 



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xiv.] Rusafah 195 

The destruction wrought by the catapults during 
the second siege of Baghdad, in the time of Musta'in, 
resulted in the depopulation and rapid decline of 
Ru§ifah. A generation later came the building 



trunk of his body was probably at first temporarily buried there, his 
head having been sent to Mamun in Khurasan, and the subsequent 
tomb of Amin in the Kazimayn has been described in chapter xii ; 
his brother Mamun was buried at Tarsus in Cilicia, having died on 
a military expedition against the Greeks. The next eight Caliphs 
from Mu'tasim to Mu'tamid all lived at Samarra, and there lay buried, 
with the exception possibly of Musta'm, who, after the disasters of the 
second siege of Baghdad, was taken down the river to Wasit and put 
to death, it being uncertain if his body was brought back to Samarra 
for buriaL After the return of the Caliphate from Samarra, Mutadid, 
the sixteenth Caliph,, was the first to be buried within the walls of 
Baghdad. He and his three sons, the Caliphs 'Alt Muktafi, Muktadir, 
and Kahir, as also his grandson Muttaki, were all buried in West 
Baghdad in the Tahirid Hartm. Radi, the twentieth Caliph, the 
predecessor (and brother) of Muttaki, was the first of those buried at 
Rusafah, but his tomb lay apart from the later royal sepulchres, which, 
lying all close together, began with that of the twenty-second Caliph 
Mustakfi, who died some years after being deposed in 334 (a.d. 946). 
For the next three centuries, with three exceptions, all the succeeding 
Caliphs, being fourteen in number, were buried at Rusafah, the three 
exceptions being : the twenty-ninth Caliph Mustarshid, killed in battle 
in 529 (a.d. 1 135) near Hamadan, and buried outside Maraghah; his 
son Mansur Rashid, deposed in 530 (a.d. 1136), afterwards slain in 
Khuzistan and buried outside Isfahan; and the thirty-third Caliph 
Mustadi, who was buried in 575 (a.d. 1180), in the Kasr *lsa Quarter 
of West Baghdad, near the Lower Bridge. Where Musta'sim, the last 
of the Abbasid Caliphs, was laid to his rest, the contemporary 
chronicles do not state, but if we are to believe Ibn Batutah, and give 
credit to the statement that the tombs of the Caliphs were restored after 
the Mongol invasion, his tomb also was among those of his ancestors 
in Rusafah. Ibn-al-Furat, folio 118 b, states that in the year 647, on 
the 20th of Sha'ban (November 29, 1249), the daughter of the Caliph 
Musta'sim died, and she was buried in the Dar-al- Hasan 'of the 
Golden Palaces' (Ad-Dar-al-Mudhahhabah), dirges being composed 
by the court poets on this event. It is uncertain what palace is here 
meant, for the Hasanf Palace can hardly have been standing at this 
late date, and the Tahirid IJarim (in West Baghdad) was already 
a ruin at the beginning of the seventh century A.H., when Yakut 
wrote. 

O 2 



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196 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of the new palaces of the Caliphs on the river bank 
a mile or more below this, and the great mosque 
at Rus&fah, in little over two centuries after its 
foundation, now stood solitary among ruins, sur- 
rounded by the graveyards of Eastern Baghdad. 
It remained in use, however, during six centuries as 
a congregational mosque for the Friday prayers, 
since all our authorities name it as one of the three 
great mosques of East Baghdad ; and as late as 727 
(a.d. 1327), three-quarters of a century after the 
Mongol invasion, Ibn Battifah mentions it as yet 
standing, though apparently at the present day no 
traces are visible of the ancient structure *. 

Rus&fah, at the close of the third century (the 
ninth a.d.), when this was still one of the three 
populous northern quarters of East Baghdad, is 
described by Ya'ktibl as traversed by two thorough- 
fares, which must have started from the neighbour- 
hood of the Khur4s£n Road and the eastern end 
of the Main Bridge. The first of these thorough- 
fares was that in which stood the Palace of Mahdl 
and the great mosque, and it is stated that this 
was 'a straight road* (Tarik mustaktm). Most 
streets in an oriental city, as is well known, are 
much the reverse of straight, and hence it seems 
not improbable that this road followed the line of 
the original ' causeway ' from which Rusifah had 
derived its name. The second thoroughfare was 

1 Ibn Batutah, ii. 111. Probably excavations made in the tract of 
land to the south of the present village of Mu'azzam might bring to 
light the foundations of the old Rusafah Mosque; also, possibly, 
traces of the palace of Mahdi. This last, according to Khatib (folio 
77 b), was, unlike the rest of Rusafah, built of burnt bricks, as doubtless 
also was the mosque; and such bricks would not have entirely 
crumbled to dust even after the lapse of eleven centuries. 



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xiv.] Rusafah 197 

that passing to the east of the Mayddn or Great 
Square of Rus&fah, which appears to have opened 
on the land side of the palace and mosque. On 
this road stood the palace of the Wazlr Fadl, son 
of the Chamberlain Rabf, who have both been 
mentioned in a previous chapter, and near this 
again was the Kasr of Umm Hablb, the daughter 
of H &rfin-ar-Rashtd. This palace, according to Yfiktit, 
overlooked the roadway which he calls the Sh£ri c - 
al-Mayd&n (the Road of the Square), and its lands 
had been granted in fief to the Princess Umm Hablb, 
after the death of the Chamberlain Rabf, by her 
half-brother the Caliph MamAn. In later times the 
palace served as a dower-house for the daughters 
of the reigning Caliph, and finally its grounds came 
to be annexed to those of the neighbouring Palace 
of Mahdl in Rus&fah. 

Y&kflt describes the Road of the Mayddn as com- 
municating directly, on the south, with the road 
going to the Tuesday Market on the further side 
of the Mukharrim Quarter, while to the north it 
gave access to the Shamm&styah Quarter. The 
upper part of the road of the Maydin was known 
as the Khudayr Market, where in the days of Ya'ktibl 
Chinese goods and other rarities were exposed for 
sale. This market is often referred to as the Khu- 
dayrlyah, and at a later time water-jars were sold 
here. Subsequently it was called the Khadariyytn 
Quarter (other spellings of the name also are given), 
and not far off was the shrine of Abu Hanffah, 
firewood being sold near this at a place on the river 
bank. In early days a mosque stood here called 
the Masjid Khudayr, and there was the Road of 
Skiffs (Tarlk-az-Zaw&rlk) on the Tigris bank, by 



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198 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

which the quarter of the Khudayr Market probably 
had its line of communication with the Upper Bridge 
of Boats. In this neighbourhood also must have 
been situated the Palace of Wadd&li, built under the 
superintendence of a man from Anbir of that name, 
by order of the Caliph Mahdl, which is described 
as standing near Ru§4fah. 

The exact position of the eastern end of the 
Upper Bridge, crossing the Tigris from the tfarblyah 
Quarter to the Shammislyah Quarter and Ru§dfah, 
is nowhere given, but from many incidental notices 
this must have been at a point not far below the 
Shammislyah Gate. Here the bridge end was 
closed by a gate often referred to during the Musta e ln 
siege under the name of the Bridge Gate (B4b-al- 
Jisr), and the highroad of the Rus&fah Quarter, 
passing through this, traversed the Upper Bridge 
to the palace of the T^hirid tlarlm on the western 
bank \ 

1 Baladhuri, 295; Yakubi, 253; Tabari, iii. 367; Yakut, ii. 290, 
4<>3i 453J >"• 231; iv. 108, 123; Marasid, i. 357; Ibn-al-Athir, vi. 
114,115. 



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CHAPTER XV 

THE SHAMMAstYAH QUARTER 

The great Northern Road. The Road of the Bridge and Suk Yahya. 
The Road of the MahdS Canal and Suk Ja'far. Palaces of Ad-Dur. 
The Barmecide Fiefs. Suk Khalid and the Kasr-aJ-Ttn. Dar Faraj. 
Dayr Darmalis and Dayr Samalu. The Shammasiyah Gate. Three 
Gates Quarter. Malikiyah Cemetery. The Shrine of Vows. The 
Palace of Munis. The Baradan Road and Bridge. Barmecide Houses 
and the Hufamiyah. Dar-ar-Rum: the Christian Quarter. The 
Dayr-ar-Rum or the Nestorian Monastery. The Jacobite Church. 
Other Christian Monasteries in West and East Baghdad. Christian 
Festivals in Baghdad. The Nestorian Missionary to China. The 
Market of Nasr and the Iron Gates. The Palace of Abu-n-Nasr near 
the Baradan Bridge. 

The Shamm&siyah Quarter lay on the east side 
of Ru§dfah, and from this it was divided by the 
great northern road, which, turning off at the head 
of the Main Bridge, went to Mosul up the left 
bank of^the Tigris. This road passed out from 
East Baghdad by the gate called the Bdb-ash- 
Shammislyah ; it was known in the lower part as 
the Road of the Bridge (Tarlk-al-Jisr), here being 
the market quarter called the Sftk Yahy&; in its 
upper part, near the Shamm£slyah Gate, it took 
the name of the Road of the Mahdl Canal, from 
the watercourse which flowed along it, and here 



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200 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

lay the market called the Sfik Ja'far. Between 
the upper and the lower part the road traversed 
the place named Ad-Dftr (the Palaces), which 
Yfikfit describes as having stood at no great 
distance from the shrine of Abu yanlfah, though 
when Y£kflt himself wrote in the year 623 (a. d. 
1226) Ad-Dflr had long since become a complete 
ruin. 

During the greater part of the reign of Hirfin- 
ar-Rashld, when the Barmecides l were at the height 
of their prosperity, Yahy& with his sons Fadl and 
Ja'far had continued to live in their houses on 
the Square (Rahbah) of the Khuld Palace in West 
Baghdad (probably the Review Ground), but some 
time before his tragic death Ja'far had begun to 
build himself a palace at Ad-Dftr, though he did 
not live to take up his residence there. The 
fiefs granted to the Barmecides in East Baghdad 
appear to have stretched from Ad-Dtir on the high- 
road of the Shamm&slyah Gate, across to the road 
going toward the Barad&n Gate, where, as will be 
mentioned presently, other of their palaces occur. 
Mukaddasi in 375 (a. d. 985) refers to Sflk YafryA, 

1 The Barmecides were of Persian origin, from Balkh. Khalid ibn 
Barmak had been one of the Waztrs of the first Abbasid Caliph Saffah, 
and in the reign of Mansur he was made Governor of Mosul. His 
advice to that Caliph, in the matter of the Sassanian Palaces at 
Madam, has been mentioned in chapter ii. In the next generation his 
son Yahya became Wazir on the accession of Harun-ar-Rashfd, who 
for many years left the government of the empire almost entirely to 
him and his son Fadl. Ja'far, the other son of Yahya, was more 
especially the boon companion of the Caliph, and during seventeen 
years the Barmecides were thus supreme both in the government 
offices and in the palace. From their many fiefs in the Shammastyah, 
it seems probable that the market street called Suk Ja'far and the 
Nahr Fadl, as the upper part of the Mahdi Canal was called, were 
named respectively after the two sons of the Wazir Yahya. 



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xv.] The Shammasiyah Quarter 201 

adding that behind it was a tomb which adjoined 
the shrine of Abu yanlfah. This market, accord- 
ing to Ya'kftbl, took its name from a certain Yahy£, 
son of Al-Walid ; Y&kfit, on the other hand, states 
that it was named after Yahyi ibn Kh&lid the 
Barmecide, Wazlr of H&rftn-ar-Rashid, and this last 
was doubtless the popular attribution. 

Nearer to the Shamm&slyah Gate was the Market 
of Khilid the Barmecide, Wazlr of the first Abbasid 
Caliph SaffAh and father of Yahyi just mentioned. 
Afterwards the Kasr-af-Tin (the Clay Castle) occu- 
pied its site, built either by Yahy£ or by his son 
Fadl (for Ydkfit in different passages mentions the 
one and the other as the founder), and this castle is 
frequently referred to during the second siege of 
Baghdad in 251 (a. d. 865) in the time of Musta'ln. 
In the seventh century (the thirteenth a.d.), when 
Yikfit wrote, the Ka§r-af-Tln had fallen so com- 
pletely to ruin, that its exact position even was 
matter of doubt, but from what X a ^arl states in- 
cidentally when relating the events of the second 
siege, it must have stood very near the Shammd- 
slyah Gate. After the fall of the Barmecides their 
various fiefs passed into the possession of Zubaydah, 
wife of H£rftn-ar-Rashid, and during the reign of 
Mamtin, when Zubaydah had fallen from power, 
they were granted to Tihir, from whom they were 
inherited by his descendants, the various T&hirid 
princes and governors. Immediately above Stik 
Yahyfi, and doubtless also on the road leading up 
to the Shammislyah Gate, was a palace called the 
Dir Faraj, after Faraj a Mamlflk (slave) of a certain 
Hamdftnah, concubine of H&rfin-ar-Rashld, who had 
manumitted her. Faraj also became the freedman 



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202 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of the Caliph, and his palace is described as being 
one of the finest in this quarter 1 . 

The Shamm&slyah Gate, which stood at the 
upper end of the road, occupied the north-western 
extremity of the city wall which enclosed the 
Shammislyah Quarter. Shamm&slyah has the mean- 
ing of Deaconry {Skammds % signifying 'a deacon' 
in Arabic), and the place originally had been occu- 
pied by several Nestorian or Jacobite monasteries, 
two being especially celebrated, namely the Dayr 
Darm£lis and the Dayr Sam4lft. In the early days 
of the Abbasid Caliphate the Sam&lti Monastery 
occupied a considerable tract of ground beside the 
river, stretching in the direction towards Baradin ; 
near it ran the Mahdl Canal (or the Nahr Fadl), 
and there was an extensive cane-brake in its vicinity 
where wild-fowl were shot The Dayr is described 
as a magnificent edifice, inhabited by many monks, 
and it took its name from Samdlft, a town of the 
Armenian frontier, which H&rfin-ar-Rashld had 
captured in the expedition of the year 163 (a. d. 
780) 8 . The Caliph caused the whole population 
of this place to be transported to Baghdad, for by 
the terms of the capitulation it had been stipulated 
that none of the families were to be separated, and 

1 Ibn Serapion, 23; Ya'kubi, 253, 254; Mukaddasi, 130; Ibn 
Kutaybah, 193 ; Tabari, iii. 1 561 ; Yakut, ii. 522 ; iii. 195, 200 ; iv. 1 14 ; 
Musbtarik, 184. 

9 A borrowed word, from the Syriac Shamosho. See Frankel, 
p. 276. For the position of these monasteries see Plan No. VII. 

8 The Byzantine chronicler Theophanes (i. 453) mentions the siege 
of this place by the Caliph Aaron (as he calls him). It lay in the 
Armeniac Theme, and he writes the name 27/uaAovof, but what place 
now represents this fortress is an unsolved problem in the historical 
geography of the Byzantine Empire, and the Arab historians un- 
fortunately offer no indications for fixing the site. 



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xv.] The Shammasiyah Quarter 203 

they were settled on the lands to the north of East 
Baghdad, where was built the monastery which 
afterwards went by the name of their native place. 
With the lapse of time the monastery fell to ruin, 
and the author of the Mardstd, who wrote about the 
year a. d. 1300, states that all trace of its buildings 
had then long since disappeared. 

The land in this neighbourhood was a low-lying 
tract near the mouth of the Fadl Canal, which ran 
into the Tigris above the Shammislyah Gate, as 
has already been described. This tract is often 
spoken of as the $alir£ or Plain of the Shamm&styah, 
also as the Rakkah, a term especially denoting lands 
that are covered by the overflow of a river. During 
the siege of Baghdad in the reign of Musta'ln, the 
assailants had their main camp in this plain of the 
Shammasiyah, and many doughty deeds took place 
before the Shammislyah Gate, which was defended 
by great catapults set on the city walls \ Outside 
the Shamm&slyah Quarter to the north-east and 
east, where, according to Ya'kftbi, the highroad to 
Nahraw&n and Persia finally left the city limits, 
was the suburb frequently mentioned in the accounts 
of the first siege of Baghdad — during the reign 
of Amln — as also during that of Musta e ln, and 
it was called Three Gates (Thalithah Abw£b) *. 

1 Tabari, iii. 1551, 1559; Yakut, ii.659, 660, 670; Hi. 317; Marasid, 
i. 432; Baladhuri, 170; Ibn Serapion, 23. 

* Ya'kubi, 269. Invariably written without the article; hence it 
cannot have any reference to the three great city gates of Shamma- 
styah, Baradan, and Khurasan. Mas'udi, vi. 443 ; Tabari, iii. 1 576. 
Probably near the Three Gates was the village called Bab-ash-Sham, 
'the Syrian Gate,' of which the author of the Marasid (i. 112) writes 
that in his day, namely about the year 700 (a.d. 1300), this was the 
name of a small hamlet in the Khalis district standing at no great 
distance from Rusafah. 



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204 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Mustatn, profiting by the experience of the former 
siege, in 251 (a. d. 865) caused all the houses lying 
between the city wall of the Shammislyah and this 
place to be demolished, in order that the assailants 
might not find shelter here for the attack. The 
houses of Baghdad, therefore, in those days stretched 
as far north as the Three Gates ; but all this quarter 
suffered greatly during the Musta'ln siege, and falling 
to ruin in the next century, the whole of this site 
afterwards came to be occupied by the palaces of the 
Buyid princes. 

Outside the BaradAn Gate, which stood next to 
the Shamm£styah Gate on the south-east, stretched 
the Mdliktyah Cemetery, called after a certain c Abd- 
Allah ibn M&lik, who was the first person to be 
buried here. The Miliklyah is mentioned as late 
as the year 570 (a. d. i 136), when the Saljtik Sultan 
Mas'ud, who was then besieging Baghdad, pitched 
his camp at this place. This, the third of the Baghdad 
sieges, and which lasted for two months, ended in 
the deposition of the Caliph Man§flr R&shid 1 , but 
no details of the siege operations are recorded. 
c Abd-AUah ibn Malik, from whom the graveyard 
had taken its name, is probably the captain of the 
guard who was a special favourite of Khayzur&n, 
the wife of the Caliph Mahdl. During the reign 
of her son H4rGn-ar-Rashtd this c Abd- Allah became 
Governor of the Palace and Chief of Police, and 
on one occasion commanded the troops sent on an 
expedition against the Greek frontier. The Mili- 
klyah was also known as the BaradAn Cemetery, 
and near this was the chapel (Mu§all£) especially 

1 Not to be confounded with Harun-ar-Rashid. Khatib, folio 114 a ; 
Ibn-al-Athir, ix. 26 ; Mas'udi, vi. 269, 308. 



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xv.] The Shammdstyah Quarter 205 

set apart for the prayers of the festival at the close 
of Ramad&n Fast. 

Here stood a tomb called the Kabr-an-Nudhfir 
(the Sepulchre of the Place of Vows), where, accord- 
ing to the popular belief, votive offerings having 
been made, the prayers of the Faithful were in- 
variably granted, and Khaflb gives an edifying 
anecdote relating how \Adud-ad-Dawlah the Buyid 
prince here obtained the accomplishment of his 
desires. The grave is said to have been that of 
a descendant of the Caliph "All, namely of a certain 
c Abd-Allah or c Ubayd-Allah, great-grandson of C AU 
Zayn-al- c Abidln (the fourth Shlah Imim). He 
having been enticed to this lonely place by the 
emissaries of one of the Abbasid Caliphs, met his 
death by falling into the pit which had been dug 
for this murderous purpose and artfully covered over, 
the unfortunate man remaining buried alive under 
the earth thrown in by those who were lying in wait. 
This Sanctuary of the Vows, Y&kflt, writing in the 
seventh century (the thirteenth a. d.), describes as 
still standing, being situated about half a mile 
beyond the city wall of later East Baghdad. The 
author of the Mardsid adds that originally the 
streets of the Rus&fah suburbs had extended beyond 
this chapel, though of course in his time all this 
district had long fallen to ruin, and by the year 
700 (a. d. 1300) the tomb was standing far out in 
the plain, half a league distant, he says, from the 
houses of the town '. 

The Buyids became masters of Baghdad in the year 
334 (A.D.945), and their buildings in this region will be 
described in a subsequent chapter ; but in the latter 

1 Khatib, folio 114a; Yakut, iv. 28 ; Marasid, ii. 385. 



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206 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

years of the preceding century a great palace was 
erected immediately outside the Shammistyah Gate 
by Mfinis, the general of the armies of Muktadir, 
and it was near the Shammistyah Gate that this 
unfortunate Caliph met his death at the hands of 
the insurgent troops. 

The Baradin Road divided the Shammistyah 
Quarter into two halves, forming the line of com- 
munication between the Baradin Gate and the head 
of the Main Bridge. Ya'kftbl refers to it under the 
name of 'the Road to the Left/ namely from 
the Khurisin Road, and it must have turned off 
this somewhat lower down than the bifurcation of 
the great northern road leading to the Shammi- 
slyah Gate. On the lower part of the Baradin 
Road had stood the houses of Khilid the Barme- 
cide and of his son Yahyi, with those of the latter s 
two sons Fadl and Ja c far. These houses probably 
lay to the left hand of the road, on the western side, 
being connected at the back with the Sftk Yahyi 
occupying part of the adjacent road to the Shammi- 
styah Gate, as has already been described. Above 
the Barmecide houses came the Baradin Bridge 
(Kanjarah Baradin), where the road crossed the 
Mahdl Canal not far from the Baradin Gate, and 
near here had been a fief granted by Mahdl to 
another Barmecide called Abu "Ubayd Mu'iwiyah 
of Balkh. The Baradin Bridge had been built by 
a certain As-Sarl ibn al-Hutam, who had owned 
land, building a palace here, and whose name was 
likewise preserved in that of a village near Baghdad, 
which having been his property was called Al- 
Hutamiyah. 

The triangle enclosed by the line of the city 



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xv.] The Shammdsiyah Quarter 207 

wall and the highroads of the Barad&n and Khur&sAn 
Gates, was traversed by the lower part of the Mahdl 
Canal, on which stood first the quarter called the 
House of the Greeks, then the Market of Nasr, and 
below this the Iron Gates, near the point where the 
Mahdl Canal bifurcated, one branch flowing back 
to Rus£fah, while the other continued along the 
Khurasan Road to the Khur&sin Gate. The D&r- 
ar-Rflmiytn, more generally called the Ddr-ar-Rftm 
(the House of the Greeks), was the Christian 
Quarter of mediaeval Baghdad, which existed down 
to the time when Fakhri wrote, namely the year 
700 (a. d. 1300). Its position is approximately fixed 
by Ibn Serapion, who describes the course of the 
Mahdt Canal as given in the preceding paragraph, 
Yikftt also speaking of this quarter as situated 
in the neighbourhood of the Shammdsiyah Quarter 
and at no great distance from the tombs of the 
Caliphs in Ru§£fah \ In the usage of mediaeval 
Arabic, the name R&mtytn or RUm (representing 
the Romaioi or Greeks) had come to be used for 
the Christians in general, whether Greek or Latin 2 , 
and the Ddr-ar-Rftm was thus the common name 
for the Christian Quarter in Baghdad. The Chris- 
tians in Mesopotamia, who were subjects of the 
Abbasid Caliphs, belonged for the most part to 
the two heterodox churches of the Jacobites and 

1 Ibn Serapion, 23; Fakhri, 190; Yakut, ii. 662, 783; iii. 317. By 
an oversight Ddr-ar-RUm has been omitted in the index to Yakut. 

2 The Spanish Moslems, for instance, call their Christian fellow 
countrymen Ar-Rum. An excellent summary of the political and 
religious condition of the Christians who inhabited the dominions of 
the Abbasid Caliphs is given in Kremer, ii. 172 to 176. See also 
Gibbon, Decline and Fall, chapter xlvii ; and for the Nestor ian 
bishoprics of Asia, Sir H. Yule, Cathay, pp. lxxxviii, ccxliv. 



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208 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the Nestorians, but the dominant sect was that 
of the Nestorians, and hence their patriarch (or 
Catholicos) had the right of residence in Baghdad, 
a privilege which the Jacobites had always sought 
in vain to obtain. 

In the Christian Quarter of the D£r-ar-Rtim was 
the church and the great monastery called the 
Dayr-ar-Rfim. This, according to Y&kfit, had been 
founded in the reign of the Caliph Mahdl, that is to 
say between the years 158 and 169 (a. d. 775 and 
785), at which time certain Greek prisoners of war, 
having been settled in this part of Baghdad, the 
Greek House was built by them with a church 
in its immediate neighbourhood. This church, 
either from its origin or by subsequent arrangement, 
belonged exclusively to the Nestorians ; it was very 
large, being solidly constructed and beautifully orna- 
mented, and in the monastery (Dayr) which was 
subsequently built on the eastern side of the 
Church, the Catholicos (the word was corrupted by 
Arabs into Al-J4thillk) had his cell or dwelling- 
house. Between the church and monastery a door 
of communication existed, through which, on the 
festivals and when Holy Communion was to be 
celebrated, the monks could pass to and fro. The 
buildings of the original Greek House are described 
as standing at some distance apart from the church 
and monastery; and they would appear to have 
covered a considerable area, for within the compass 
of the walls was a broad court surrounded by 
porticoes. 

The author of the Mar&sid remarks that ' among 
the Christian sects, no one of the one sect will pray 
in the church of the other sect/ and he continues 



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xv.] The Shammdsiyah Quarter 209 

that for this reason the Jacobites had their own 
particular church in Baghdad, situated near the 
great church of the Nestorians, this Jacobite 
church being especially remarkable for the number 
of wonderful pictures shown there, which, with some 
other works of art that it contained, caused the place 
to be much visited by strangers. 

In all ordinary circumstances the Christians 
appear to have enjoyed complete toleration in 
Baghdad under the government of the Caliphs, 
for besides these two churches with the great 
Monastery of the Dayr-ar-Rtim, they possessed 
many other lessef monasteries in different quarters 
of the city. Thus in Karkh, on the western side of 
the Tigris there was the Monastery of the Virgins 
in the fief of the Christians, which has already 
been mentioned; also the Dayr Durtd and the 
Dayr-al-Kibib upstream, beyond the Zubaydiyah 
Fief; while in the Kafrabbul District to the north- 
ward of the Round City stood the monastery called 
the Dayr Ashmftni, after the founder, whose body 
lay buried here. The festival of Ashmtin£ was 
celebrated on the third day of the month Tishrln I, 
corresponding with October, and this monastery, 
being a very pleasant place of resort, was much 
visited by the people of Baghdad. Its exact position 
is not given, but it was at no great distance from 
the northern suburbs. 

In addition to the foregoing, Y&kftt mentions 
two other monasteries as of Western Baghdad, 
though again from the lack of precise information 
the position of neither the one nor the other of 
these can be exactly fixed. One was the Dayr 
Midyfin, lying on the bank of the Karkh&y& Canal, 



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210 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

which the author of the Mardsid says was also 
known as the Dayr Sarkhls (this last name being 
probably a clerical error for Sarjts, i. e. the Monas- 
tery of Sergius), and this is described as a fine 
place, much frequented by pleasure-seekers from 
the city. The other monastery in the vicinity of 
West Baghdad was the Dayr-ath-Tha c 4lib (the 
Monastery of the Foxes), and concerning the 
position of this there was much dispute. Some 
authorities state that it stood nearly two miles 
distant from Baghdad, on the Kflfah highroad 
towards $arsar, and near the village of H^rithlyah ; 
while according to others the Monastery of the 
Foxes was the building that stood near the shrine 
of Ma'rflf Karkhl, and hence was either to be 
identified with the Dayr-al-J&thilik (the Monastery 
of the Catholicos or Patriarch), being merely its other 
name, or else was a second monastery which had 
stood alongside of it. 

In Eastern Baghdad five monasteries are men- 
tioned by Y&kAt in addition to the great Dayr- 
ar-Rfim of the Christian Quarter. Upstream were 
the two monasteries outside the Shamm£s!yah Gate, 
namely the Dayr Darm&lis and the Dayr Samilft, 
which have already been noticed ; while in the 
district immediately to the north of this, near the 
village of Mazrafah, was the Dayr S&btir (the 
Monastery of Sapor), ' very populous, pleasant, and 
with many gardens.' Likewise near Mazrafah and 
at some four leagues distant from Baghdad stood 
the Dayr Jurjis (the Monastery of St. George) with 
numerous gardens and fine fruit-trees, of which 
Yiktit speaks as one of the pleasantest places to 
visit in this quarter of the city. Also in East 



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xv.] The Shammasiyah Quarter 211 

Baghdad, but downstream, below the southern 
quarters which surrounded the palaces of the Caliph, 
was the monastery called the Dayr-az-Zandaward, 
lying near the Azaj Gate which will be mentioned 
in a later chapter. Its gardens had been cele- 
brated for the oranges and grapes grown here, 
' the best in all Baghdad/ Y&fcAt states ; but when 
the author of the Mardstd wrote, about the year 700 
(a. d. 1300), both the gardens and the Monastery of 
Zandaward had entirely- disappeared, its site being 
then occupied by the houses and streets of New 
Baghdad. 

The account which Y£ktit gives of these monas- 
teries is in the main derived from the work of 
Sh&bushtl, who composed his Kitdb-ad-Diydrdt (the 
Book of the Monasteries) in Egypt, and who died 
about the year 390 (a. d. iooo) l . Many of these 
establishments, by the year 623 (a. d. 1226), when 
Y&kflt wrote, would appear to have already fallen 
to ruin, their monks having died or dispersed, but 
in the days of Yfikflt the gardens of the monasteries 
still for the most part remained, and are noted by 
him as 'pleasant places' whither the people of 
Baghdad went on festival days. The author of 
the Mardstd, however, writing in the year 700 
(a. d. 1300), and therefore after the Mongol siege, 
in almost every case, having epitomized the notice 

1 The MS. of this work (lacking the first thirteen folios) exists in 
the Berlin Library, under the No. 8321, which MS. Ahlwardt in the 
Catalogue has in error ascribed to Abu-1-Faraj Al-Isfahani, the author 
of the FihrisL It is to be hoped that before long this important MS. 
may be published by Mr. F. J. Heer, who in his recent work (Die 
historischen und geographischen Quellen in Jacuts Worierbuch^ p. 88, 
Strassburg, Triibner, 1899) has given an interesting account of the MS, 
and its contents. 

P 2 



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212 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch, 

given by Y&ktit, adds that all trace of this or that 
monastery had in his time disappeared. As already 
said, there is evidence to show that in former times 
under the rule of the Abbasid Caliphs, Christians 
in Baghdad were not subject to any molestation or 
oppression by the officials of the government. In 
moments of popular commotion their churches and 
monasteries doubtless were plundered by the rabble, 
but the mosques of the Shfahs and the Sunnts 
alternately had to suffer a like experience, when 
the mob, in the nominal interests of the one sect 
or the other, broke loose from all restraint and 
rioted through the outlying quarters of the great 
city. 

When describing the mother church of the Nesto- 
rians near the Dayr-ar-Rtim, Ydktit relates how it 
was the custom of the Moslems of Baghdad to 
visit this church on Sundays and on festivals, the 
crowd then being often very great of those who 
came to look at 'the young deacons and monks, 
with their handsome faces'; and he speaks of 
1 dancing, drinking, and pleasure-making ' as matters 
for which these Dayrs were for the most part 
visited. YAkfit adds that the Christians in Baghdad 
were wont to celebrate each af their great festivals 
at a different monastery; and in his day the most 
celebrated of these feast days were the four Sundays 
of the Festival of the Fast (doubtless Easter and 
the three following Sundays), of which the first 
Sunday festival was held at the monastery called 
the Dayr-al- e Asiyah, the second at the Dayr-az- 
Zurayktyah (but neither of these monasteries is 
elsewhere mentioned), the third Sunday festival 
being at the Dayr-az-Zandaward, and the fourth 



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xv.] The Shammdsiyah Quarter 213 

at the Dayr Darmdlis; and he adds 'to all these 
the Christians are wont to assemble, together with 
many other pleasure-seekers 1 / 

As showing the equal footing on which the 
Christians lived with the Moslems under the 
Abbasid Caliphs, a translation may be given of 
the account' left us by the Moslem author of the 
Kit&b-al-Fihrist, relating an interview which he had 
with a certain Nestorian missionary, whom he met 
in Baghdad during the reign of the Caliph T£i\ 
The passage, further, is of historical importance as 
giving the limit in date of the Nestorian missions 
sent into further Asia ; for, as is well known by the 
Singanfu inscription and other similar documents, 
Nestorian Christianity had at one time spread 
throughout the length and breadth of Asia, pene- 
trating into the Chinese empire, and it lay with 
the chief Patriarch of Mesopotamia to appoint the 
bishops who resided in India, Central Asia, and 
the far East. The author of the Fihrist states 
that the missionary he met was a monk, a native 
of Najrdn, which was a Nestorian bishopric of 
Southern Arabia, and that he met him after his 
return from a mission to China in the year 377 
(a. d. 987). The narrative in the Fihrist then 
continues : — 

1 Now this man of the people of Najr&n had 
been dispatched some seven years before this 
date by the Catholicos (or Patriarch of Baghdad) 
to the land of China, there being sent with him 
five other men of the Christians, of those whose 
business it is to attend to the affairs of religion. 

1 Yakut, ii. 616, 643, 650, 659, 660, 662, 665, 666, 670, 680, 695 ; 
Marasid, i. 426, 429, 430, 431, 432, 436, 440. 



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214 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

And six years after they had thus gone forth, this 
monk with one other alone of all that company 
had returned alive (to Baghdad), whom I met in 
the Christian Quarter of the Dir-ar-Rfim behind 
the church, finding him to be a man in the prime 
of life with a fine figure, but sparing of words unless 
he were questioned. So I asked him what had 
been the cause of his remaining away so long a 
time, and what reason had brought him back 
thence, whereupon he recounted to me all the 
adventures that had befallen him, and what had 
hindered him in the journey. He said in conclu- 
sion that the Christians who had been of old in 
the lands of China were now disappeared, and 
that their possessions had perished, so that in 
the whole land hardly one Christian now remained 
alive, and though in ancient times the Christians 
there had possessed a church, this also was now 
in ruin. And the monk added that when he had 
at length seen how none remained there of his 
religion, he had finally returned home, travelling 
back in less time than it had taken him to perform 
the voyage out 1 / 

On the Mahdl Canal, immediately below the 
Greek Quarter, was the Market of Nasr, called 
after Nasr the son of M£lik, of the Khuz&'ah 

1 The description of China, which follows, is very curious, but this 
is not the place to attempt its translation, and many of the names of 
Chinese towns and provinces have unfortunately been so corrupted by 
the copyist of the MS. as to be almost unrecognizable. The text will 
be found in the Kit&b-al-Fihrist, p. 349. The editor, Professor Fliigel, 
has made the mistake in the preface, p. xiv, and his notes, p. 184, 
of supposing that the Dar-ar-Rum, here mentioned, refers to Con- 
stantinople: see Kremer, ii. 173, note 2, who rightly points out 
that it is the Christian Quarter of Baghdad, which is the place 
intended. 



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xv.] The Shammdsiyah Quarter 215 

tribe, to whom the Caliph Mahdi had granted 
these lands in fief. This Nasr is best known as 
father of the celebrated ascetic Ahmad ibn Nasr, 
ond of the martyrs in the cause of orthodoxy, whom 
the Caliph W&thik put to death in 231 (a. d. 846). 
He had preached against the Caliph, declaring 
him to be a heretic for denying the dogma that 
the Kurdn was * uncreate ' ; and for witnessing that 
the Book of Allah was eternal he suffered death. 
Khatlb, from whom Yikflt has copied most of his 
information about these places, adds that there was 
originally a mosque in the Market of Nasr, but that 
this fell to ruin at the time of the second siege of 
Baghdad, under Musta c ln. Khatlb further adds 
that a certain Abu Nasr H&shim had bought from 
As-Sari \ the original owner of the fief on the road 
near the Barad&n Bridge, a parcel of land on which 
Abu Nasr built himself a palace. This was the 
finest building in all the neighbouring quarter, at 
least in the judgement of the Emperor of Constan- 
tinople, to whom (so Khatlb reports) a drawing 
representing the various quarters of Baghdad 
having been submitted, his Majesty pointed out 
this palace as to his mind the most magnificent. 
Finally, the Iron Gates (Al-Abw£b-al-Hadld) de- 
scribed by Ibn Serapion as in the Nasr Market, 
may possibly be identical with the gate called the 
B&b Nasr, which is mentioned by Ibn-al-Athlr in his 
chronicle under the year 519 (a. d. 1 125) as situated 
not far from the Shamm&siyah plain, though it is 
to be remarked that no other writer refers at this 
late date either to the Na§r Market or the Iron 

1 See above, p. 206. The name is also written in some MSS. 
Abu-n-Nadr Hashim ibn al-Kasim. 



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216 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

Gates, and it is therefore doubtful whether they 

existed after the changes effected by the Buyid 

princes, when these built their palaces in East 
Baghdad \ 

1 Ibn Serapion, 22, 23 ; Ya'kubi, 252, 253 ; Khatib, folios 88 b, 1 13 b; 
Yakut, il 783; iii. 207, 317*; iv. 187; Marasid, i. 430; Ibn-al-Athir, 
x. 441. 



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CHAPTER XVI 



THE MUKHARRIM QUARTER 

The Khurasan Road and its Markets. The Bab-a$-Tak Gate. 
The Musa Canal and the Mukharrim. The Zahir Garden, the Great 
Road, and the Street of 'Arar the Greek. The Palace of Mutasim. 
The Long Street, the Palace of Ibn-al-Furat, and the Street of the 
Vine. The Suk-al-'A$sh or Thirst Market. The Market of Harash! 
and his Palace. The Ansar Bridge, the Palace of Ibn-al-Khasib, and 
the three Tanks. The Great Pitched Gate. The Mukharrim Gate 
and Road : the Canal to the Firdus Palace. The Haymarket. Palace 
of Princess Banujah. The Horse Market and its Gate. The Bib 
'Ammar and the Palace of 'Umarah. The two lower Canals at the 
Triple Divide. The Mualla CanaL The Bab Abraz and the Gate of 
the Tuesday Market. The Canal of the Palaces. The Bab 'Ammah. 
The Mushjir Fief. 

The southern limit of the Shammdslyah Quarter 
was the great Khur&s&n Road, which ran from the 
end of the Main Bridge of Boats eastward to 
the Khurdsin Gate, whence the highroad went to 
Nahraw&n Town, on the canal of that name. In 
describing the three northern quarters at the close 
of the third century (the ninth a.d.), Ya'kflbl men- 
tions this Khur&s&n Road as the chief market of 
Eastern Baghdad, where were gathered together all 
kinds of goods and stuffs and manufactured articles, 
with by- streets to the right hand and to the 
left occupied by warehouses of the merchants and 



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218 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the dwellings of the tradesmen. The number of 
shops in this great market must have been con- 
siderable, for, as the result of a fire which occurred 
here in the year 292 (a.d. 905), more than three 
hundred shops near the bridge are reported to have 
been burnt. 

In the immediate neighbourhood of the Main 
Bridge, where the road began, stood the Market of 
the Goldsmiths (Sflk-as-S&ghah), and here was the 
great arched gate, called the B&b-af-T&k, which 
gave its name collectively to the three northern 
quarters of Eastern Baghdad, for these are often 
referred to as the Bab-af-T&k (the Quarter of the 
Gate of the Archway). This arch had originally 
formed part of the Palace of Asmd, daughter of the 
Caliph Mansflr, which occupied one side of the road- 
way, while opposite to it stood the Palace of Prince 
c Ubayd- Allah 1 , son of Mahdi, the road between the 
two being known as the Bayn-al-Kasrayn (the Road 
between the Palaces). The ground here had 
originally been granted in fief by Mahdt to his Chief 
of Police, Khuzaymah ibn Khdzim, whose palace, 
called the D£r Khuzaymah, stood at the corner 
where the road of the Shammdslyah branched off 
to the northern gate. In the days of H&rAn-ar- 
Rashld the B&b-at-T&k at the bridge head was often 
used as a meeting-place of the poets, whose works 
the Caliph delighted to have recited before him, and 
hence this building had come to be known as the 
Majlis-ash-Shu c ar&, or the Assembly Hall of the Poets. 
The name Mukharrim had been given to the 
parcel of land here on the Tigris bank long before 
Baghdad was founded, for during the first century 

1 Khatib, folio 83 a. Yakut, iii. 489, calls him 'Abd- Allah in error. 



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xvi.] The Mukharrim Quarter 219 

of the Hijrah, when the Moslems had recently 
conquered Mesopotamia, an Arab of that name 
settled here on a fief granted to him by the Caliph 
c Omar. It will be remembered that the Mukharrim 
Quarter was bounded on the east and south by the 
city wall of the time of Musta'ln, which curved 
round in a quadrant from the Khur&sin Gate to 
the Gate of the Tuesday Market, immediately above 
the Firdtis Palace on the river. The Tigris formed 
the western boundary of the quarter, and more or 
less parallel with the river bank ran the Great Road 
(Ash-Sh&rf-al-A'zam), leading from the Gate of the 
Tuesday Market up to the Main Bridge, where, 
crossing the line of the Khur&s&n Road, it communi- 
cated with the Shamm&styah Road and the Road 
of the Mayd£n in Rusdfah. Through these roads 
in Rus&fah, therefore, the Great Road was the chief 
thoroughfare from north to south on the eastern 
side of the river, connecting the Shammdsiyah Gate 
and the Upper Bridge with the Lower Bridge and 
the Gate of the Tuesday Market. The name of the 
Great Road, however, was only applied to that part 
of the thoroughfare which traversed the Mukharrim 
Quarter, beginning where the Garden of Z&hir lay 
along the bank of the Tigris, just below the head 
of the Main Bridge, and in its upper part the 
Great Road probably marked the limit of this 
garden on the east side, the mouth of the Mtis£ 
Canal being at the lower boundary. The position 
of the Garden of Z&hir is unfortunately not specifi- 
cally described, nor is it stated who Zfihir, the original 
owner of the garden, had been. The accounts, how- 
ever, clearly indicate that the Zdhir Garden lay on 
the bank of the Tigris, at the mouth of the Mtisd 



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220 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Canal, which flowed through and irrigated the 
garden after having crossed the Great Road which 
went down the river side to the Gate of the Tuesday 
Market ; and it seems therefore probable that the 
garden must have been situated almost immediately 
below the Main Bridge of Boats. The Zihir Garden 
is also mentioned in connexion with the Wazlr of 
the Caliph Muktadir, Ibn Muklah, who built himself 
a palace here — spending, it is said, 200,000 dtn&rs 
(about ;£ 1 00,000) — and he annexed some twenty 
Jarlbs (or seven acres) of the garden, which were 
included in the precincts of his new palace, the com- 
pletion of which fell in the year 320 (a.d. 932) l . 

As already described in chapter xiii, the Mfis& 
Canal traversed the Mukharrim Quarter from south- 
east to north-west. It entered the quarter by the 
Gate of the Horse Market, and after sending off six 
minor branch canals (which all started from its left 
bank, flowing towards the river), the parent stream, 
as mentioned in the last paragraph, ultimately flowed 
out into the Tigris below the Zdhir Garden. Ibn 
Serapion states that before reaching the garden, 
and after crossing the Great Road, the canal 
traversed the Street of 'Amr-ar-RGmi (the Greek 
'Amr), which it appears likely was a crossroad to 
the north of the garden. Who this *Amr was is 
not given, but possibly he is the individual men- 
tioned by Bal&dhurl as having been the freedman 
of the Caliph Hddi, who had named him governor 
of Kazwln in northern Persia 2 . 

1 Ibn Serapion, 22; 'Arib, 64, 154, 185. This Zihir is not to be 
confounded with the Caliph Zihir. 

2 Yakubi, 251, 253 ; Istakhri, 83 ; Ibn Serapion, 21, 22; 'Arib, 64, 
158; Baladhuri, 295, 323; Mas'udi, viii. 236; Yakut, Hi. 232; iv. 441. 



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xvi.] The Mukharrim Quarter 221 

In the northern part of the Mukharrim Quarter, 
on the bank of the Mtisi Canal, and probably near 
the Khur£s&n Gate, stood the Palace of the Caliph 
Mu'tasim, along the southern side of which passed 
the Long Street (Darb-at-Tawil). This palace had 
been inhabited by Mu'tasim between the years 218 
and 221 (a.d. 833 to 836), that is to say before he 
abandoned Baghdad for S&marrd ; and it must have 
fallen to ruin not long after this latter date, for the 
Mu c ta§im Palace is apparently not mentioned by 
any authority later than the time of Ibn Serapion, 
who wrote at the beginning of the fourth century 
(the tenth a.d.). Just before reaching the Long 
Street and the Mu c ta§im Palace a canal branched 
from the Nahr Mflsd, which, after a short course, 
reached the garden of the palace built by the Wazir 
Ibn-al-Fur&t, where its waters became lost in irri- 
gation channels. 'Alt Ibn-al-Furfit was a statesman 
well known during the reign of Muktadir, whom he 
served as Wazlr three several times, namely between 
the years 296 and 312 (a.d. 909 to 924); and along 
this canal leading to his palace passed the road 
called the Sh&rf Karm-al-'Arsh (or Karm-al-Mu c ar- 
rash, as one MS. gives it), which may be translated 
the Street of the Vine Trellis or of the Climbing 
Vine. 

In this neighbourhood lay the Thirst Market 
(Sflk-al-'Atsh), through which the branch canal, now 
under discussion, took its way shortly after bifur- 
cating from the Mflsd Canal ; and this was one of 
the chief centres of the Mukharrim Quarter. The 
market had been built during the reign of Mahdl 
by Sa'id-al-Harasht, whose quadrangle and palace, 
with the market street called after him, will be 



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222 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

mentioned presently. The Stik-al- c Atsh seems to 
have fallen early to ruin, for when Y&kflt wrote in 
the beginning of the seventh century (the thirteenth 
A.D.), the place where it had originally stood was 
completely unknown. The original intention of the 
Caliph Mahdl had been to have called it the Market 
of Satiety (Sflk-ar-Riyy), presumably because it was 
assumed that 'satiety* for all bodily wants could 
here be easily attained. It was to have beeft the 
rival of the markets of Karkh on the western side, 
and with a view of taking away trade from these, 
many merchants were deported from West Baghdad 
and settled here by the Caliph's orders. The name 
of Thirst Market, however, was given to it by the 
people in derision, and this became its permanent 
appellation. Adjacent to it stood the smaller market 
called Suwaykah-al-Harashi, already referred to, with 
the quadrangle (Murabba'ah) in which stood the 
palace called the D&r Sa'td, this Sa c id-al-flarasht l 
having been the general whom the Caliph Mahdl 
dispatched against Al-Mukanna', the celebrated 
Veiled Prophet of KhurdsAn, whose overthrow, much 
to the relief of his master, Sa'id brought about. 

To the south of the Palace of Mu'tasim, and 
higher up its main stream, the Mtisd Canal was 
crossed by a bridge called the Kantarah-al-Ans£r, 
the name of Ans&r or ' Helpers' having been given 
to those people in Medina who had aided the Prophet 
Muhammad at the time of his flight out of Mecca, 
and whose descendants in after times still bore this 
honourable surname. Near this bridge stood the 

1 Ya'kubi, 304 ; 'Arib, 28, 43. Harasht is the true reading, not 
Khursht (which would mean the Khurasanian), as given in Yakut, 
Hi. 194 ; iv. 485. 



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xvi.] The Mukharrim Quarter 223 

Palace of Aljmad-al-Khastbi, commonly called Ibn- 
al-Khastb, Wazlr in the year 314 (a.d. 926) of the 
Caliph Muktadir 1 ; the name of the road which 
crossed by the An§4r Bridge is not given, but it was 
probably the Road of Sa'd (which will be noticed 
presently), leading into the Long Street near the 
Mu'tasim Palace. 

Immediately beyond the bridge three minor canals 
branched from the M&s4 Canal, conducting its waters 
to a like number of tanks, called respectively the 
Hawd D£tid, the tlawd Hayl&nah, and the Hawd- 
al-An§Sr, this last after the Helpers, from whom the 
bridge . took its name. The tank of D&tid lay 
nearest to the Thirst Market, already described, 
and it . was either called after Ditid (the Arabic 
form of David), the son of the Caliph Mahdl, or 
after one of his freedmen who was the namesake 
of the prince. The midmost of the tanks was called 
after Haylinah (Helena), either the favourite concu- 
bine of H&rtin-ar-Rashld, or, according to another 
version, a slave of the same name who had held the 
post of I£ahram£nah or Stewardess of the Harim 
in the reign of Mansur. She is probably identical 
with the woman already mentioned (p. 146), after 
whom a suburb and fief in Western Baghdad, near 
the Muhawwal Gate, had been named 8 . 

1 He was the son of 'Ubayd-Allah, but in accordance with a common 
custom reverted to the name of his grandfather, Ahmad ibn-al-Khasib, 
who^had been Wazfr of the Caliph Muntasir, in 247 (a.d. 861), at 
Samarra. In my notes to Ibn Serapion, p. 282, this palace of Ibn-al- 
Khasib has been attributed, in error, to the grandfather, who having 
lived at Samarra is unlikely to have been the builder of it. 

1 'Arib, 127; Ibn Serapion, 22; Ya'kubi, 252, 253, 255; Khatib, 
folio 106 b ; Yakut, ii. 362 ; iii. 194 ; iv. 485. From the description 
of the courses of the canals given by Ibn Serapion, it is evident that 
the Thirst Market lay to the south of the Khurasan highroad, hence 



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224 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

South again of the An§£r Bridge, but further up- 
stream, the main branch canal of the Mukharrim 
Quarter bifurcated from the Nahr Mtisi, leaving it 
near the gateway known as the Bib Mukayyar-al- 
Kabir (the Great Pitched Gate), so called from the 
bitumen or mineral pitch (in Arabic Kir) with which 
it was overlaid. This method of preserving the sun- 
dried bricks from the effects of damp and rain was 
of common usage in Baghdad. The bitumen came 
chiefly from a well lying between Kflfah and Basrah, 
where it rose to the surface of the ground mixed 
with water. Though originally soft like clay, it soon 
hardened by exposure, and when plastered on a wall 
and polished it came to resemble a slab of marble 
in appearance. It was especially used for lining the 
hot rooms in the baths, where both floors and walls 
could thus be rendered watertight ; and YdkAt says 
there was a large quarter of Baghdad in his, day 
known as Darb-al-Kayy&r (the Street of the Pitch- 
workers), probably identical with the Sh&ri c -al-Kay- 
y&rln (see p. 78) in West Baghdad, mentioned by 
Ibn Serapion, which took its name from those who 
were of this trade. 

The Great Road of the Mukharrim Quarter, which 
led up from the Lower Bridge of Boats and the 
Tuesday Market, by which, according to Ya'kAbt, 
'one came over from Western Baghdad/ after passing 

Yakut (who confesses that no one could, in his day, tell where this 
market had stood), is certainly wrong in placing it between the Sham- 
masiyah and Rusafah, and in the immediate neighbourhood of the 
great Dyke of Mu'izx-ad-Dawlah, which will be described in the 
following chapter. This last, indeed, must have been separated from 
the Thirst Market by the whole extent of the Shammasfyah Quarter. 
In my paper on Ibn Serapion, p. 283, I have by mistake mistranslated 
Suk-al-'Atsh as the ' Famine* Market — atsh being, of course, 'thirst,' 
not ' hunger.' 



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xvi.] The Mukharrim Quarter 225 

first along the river bank appears to have bifurcated 
when it came to the gate known as the Bib-al- 
Mukharrim, one branch road turning inland towards 
the Great Pitched Gate. The branch canal of the 
Mukharrim Quarter ran down this road to the 
Mukharrim l Gate, where the canal was crossed by 
an arched bridge, called the Kantarah-al-'Abb&s, 
after a brother of the Caliph Mansflr ; and in later 
times the canal here was known as the Ditch of 
Al-'Abb&s. A branch, starting from the Mukharrim 
Gate, flowed off south through a channel dug by 
the Caliph Mu'tadid to irrigate the gardens of the 
Firdtis Palace beyond the town wall ; but the main 
course of the canal, after passing the Mukharrim 
Gate, turned up north along the highroad of the 
Mukharrim Quarter (the Great Road), where its 
waters soon became lost in irrigation channels. 

Between the Mukharrim Gate and the Great 
Pitched Gate, the thoroughfare which, as said, bifur- 
cated from the Great Road, was bordered by the 
booths of the Hay Market (Haw&nlt-al-'Alteftn), and 
at the Great Pitched Gate there turned off the road 
known as the Shdri* Sa'd-al-Wastf, which led towards 
the Ans&r Bridge. This road was called after a 

1 The position of the Bib Mukharrim^is difficult precisely to 
determine. It stood on the canal (Ibn Serapion, p. 22), and lay 
therefore within the Mukharrim Quarter, and was not a gate in the 
line of the wall built by Musta'in. Further, from the account of the 
reception of the Greek ambassadors by Muktadir, we learn that the 
Mukharrim Gate was on the line of the thoroughfare going from 
the Shammasiyah Gate down the Tigris to the gate of the palace 
called the Bab-al-' Amman fArib, 64; Khatib, folio 93 b). It seems 
probable, therefore, that the Bab Mukharrim stood somewhat to the 
north of where the Gate of the Sultan (the modern Bab-al-Mu'azzam) 
was built at a subsequent date, when the later wall round the quarter 
of the palaces, which still encloses the eastern city of Baghdad, was 
erected by the Caliph Mustazhir. 



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226 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

certain Sa e d 'the Slave,' possibly the same as Sa'd-al- 
Khadim (the Eunuch), who having been originally 
of the household of Itikh the Turk, became the 
favourite attendant of the Caliph Mutawakkil. On 
this Street of Sa c d stood the Palace of Ibn-al-Khaslb, 
Wazlr of the Caliph Muktadir, already mentioned ; 
and apparently near this was the Market (Suwaykah) 
which took its name from Hajj&j-al-Waslf, who had 
been a freedman of the Caliph Mahdl, 

Further up the Mtis& Canal, and probably due 
east of the Great Pitched Gate, was the bifurcation 
of the uppermost of the six canals which branched 
from the Nahr Mflsd, and this had its point of origin 
near the gate called the Bib 'Amm^r. It flowed 
direct to the Palace of B&nftjah, whose name is also 
written B&ntikah (meaning Little B£n A or ' Lady ' in 
Turkish), a daughter of the Caliph Mahdl, who is 
reported to have died young, she having been the 
first of the Abbasids to be buried in the Khayzur&n 
cemetery outside the Abu Hanlfah Suburb. This 
princess was a great favourite with her father, whom 
she used always to accompany when he left the 
capital, and the good people of Basrah were on 
one occasion much scandalized by seeing her ride 
publicly beside the Caliph Mahdl as he entered 
their city, she being on this occasion dressed as 
a page (Ghul&m) in a black tunic and girt with a 
sword, wearing a man's turban on her head. She 
is described as having had brown hair and a pleasing 
figure, its plumpness showing out under her boy's 
dress ; and when she died the Caliph Mahdi mourned 
for her publicly, sitting to receive the condolence 
of his nobles as though he had lost one of his sons. 
Whether her palace lay to the right (north) or to 



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xvi.] The Mukharrim Quarter 227 

the left (south) of the Mtis£ Canal is not stated, 
but this branch canal which carried water to its 
grounds ended here, the stream running dry in the 
irrigation channels. 

The uppermost reach of the Mflsd Canal, above 
the branch to the Binfijah Palace, flowed through 
the Horse Market called Sfik-ad-Dawwibb (more 
exactly the Market for the sale of Riding Animals 
and Beasts of Burden), which was closed by the 
Gate of the Horse Market at its upper end, and 
below by the Bib c Amm£r. After whom the Gate 
of 'AmmSr was named is not stated, indeed the 
only authorities who speak of it are, apparently, 
Ibn Serapion and 'Arib ; but it is possible that this 
'Ammir may have been a connexion of an indi- 
vidual named 'Um&rah, whose palace called the D&r 
c Um£rah is mentioned by Y&kflt, quoting from 
Khatlb, as having stood in the Mukharrim Quarter, 
this 'Um&rah being the son of Abu-1-Kha§tb, cham- 
berlain of the Caliph Mansflr. In the description 
left us by Ibn Serapion, the Gate of the Horse 
Market is the first building mentioned as standing 
on the Mtis& Canal, and this probably lay a short 
distance to the north of the south-eastern limit of 
the three northern quarters of East Baghdad Later 
authorities state that the Mdsi Canal entered the 
town very soon after passing out from the grounds 
of the Palace of the Pleiades, and this Gate of the 
Horse Market doubtless was in the wall which 
Musta'tn had caused to be built round these quarters 
at the time of the siege in 251 (a.d. 865) \ 

1 Ibn Serapion, 21, 22; 'Arib, 17; Ya'kubi, 254; Ibn Jubayr, 130; 
Ibn Batutah, ii. 106 ; Khatib, folios 89 b, 90 b, 106 a, 1 16 a ; Yakut, ii. 
521; iil 200; iv. 112; Marasid, iii. 252; Ibn-al-Athir, vii. 65; Ibn 

Q 2 



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228 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

At the Triple Divide, just outside the Palace of 
the Pleiades, the two other canals from the Nahr 
Mflsi branched to the left, southwards, and the 
upper of the two was called the Mu € all& Canal. 
This was so named from Mu'allS, a freedman of 
the Caliph Mahdt, afterwards general-in-chief of the 
forces in the reign of H&rdn-ar-Rashtd, who is cele- 
brated for having held more governments than any 
of his contemporaries, he having been governor, 
in turn, of the city of Basrah and of the provinces 
of Ahw&z, F&rs, Yam&mah, and Bahrayn. The 
Mu'alld Canal entered the Mukharrim Quarter by 
the gate called the B£b Abraz, which at the begin- 
ning of the fourth century (the tenth a.d.) marked 
the south-eastern angle of the three northern quarters 
of East Baghdad. After entering the city the canal 
passed along, between the houses, until it came to 
the Gate of the Tuesday Market (Bdb Sdk-ath- 
Thal&thah), which at this period marked the southern 
limit of East Baghdad ; and here, leaving the city, 
the Mu € all£ Canal entered the Firdfts Palace — the 
uppermost of the three palaces of the Caliphs — 
and after irrigating its gardens, flowed out into the 
Tigris close below the palace buildings. 

Below the Palace of the Firdtis stood the Hasan t 
Palace (which with others will be more particularly 
described in a later chapter), and directly to the 
tfasant Palace flowed the lowest of the three 
canals from the Divide on the Nahr Mtisd. After 
watering the gardens of the T&j Palace, which lay 

• 

Kutaybah, 193 ; Tabari, iii. 543. In the passage of Ibn al-Athir (vi. 
58), corresponding with this last reference to Tabari, the name of the 
Princess BdnHkah is, in error, given as Y&k&tah % and this mistake 
has been copied by Kroner, ii. 62. 



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xvi.] The Mukkarrim Quarter 229 

immediately below the Hasan! on the river bank, 
this third canal finally discharged its waters into the 
Tigris below the palace gardens. These grounds had 
been entered by the third canal near the main gate- 
way of the palace garden wall, called the B&b-al- 
'Ammah (the Public Gate), which will be more fully 
noticed at a later page, but before reaching the 
gateway, and at some little distance from the Divide, 
Ibn Serapion writes that the canal passed the Gate 
of the Fief of Mushjlr (B£b Katfah Mushjir) 1 . 
This fief must have occupied much of the ground 
covered by the Rayh£nlyln Market of later Baghdad, 
for the place is not mentioned by subsequent writers, 
but in the beginning of the fourth century (the tenth 
a.d.) it still bore the name of its original owner. 
Mushjlr or Mushklr-al-Waslf (the Slave) had been 
a favourite Turk attendant of the Caliph Mu'tadid, 
by whom he was promoted to the command of the 
army; Mu'tadid thus requiting a special service 
rendered to him, for when Mushklr had been 
Steward of the Palace to the preceding Caliph 
Mu € tamid, he had brought about the prompt 
accession of the nephew (Mu'tadid) by serving the 
uncle (Mu € tamid) with a savoury dish of artfully 
poisoned meat. 

Such, at the beginning of the fourth century (the 
tenth a.d.), before the advent of the Buyids, were 



1 Yakut, iv. 845. In Ibn Serapion (pp. 22 and 279) the name is 
printed in error Mdshajtn. Khatib, folio 106 b, has the right spelling 
with a final r, and compare Tabari, iii. 2121, with Mas'udi, viii. no. 
The name is also written MAshkir, and evidently represents the 
Persian Mushgfr (with a hard g)> meaning ' mouse-catcher,' which is 
the name of a species of crow, also called M&sk-khw&r, or ' mouse- 
eater/ The Turk slaves frequently had names (or nicknames) derived 
from birds, eg. Tughril, ' Falcon/ Kalaun, ' Duck.' 



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230 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

the three northern quarters of East Baghdad, namely 
Rusdfah, Shamm&slyah, and Mukharrim, which were 
enclosed by the semicircle of the wall starting from 
the Tigris at the Shamm&styah Gate and coming 
down to the river again at the gate of the Tuesday 
Market, above the palaces of the Caliph. 



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MapVll. To face page 231 




oogle 



CHAPTER XVII 



THE BUYID PALACES 

The Palace of Munis and the Buyid Palaces. The Dyke of 
Muizz-ad-Dawlah and the Zahir Garden. The Dar-al-Mamlakat of 
Muizz-ad-Dawlah. The great Dyke and the Kurij Canal. The 
Palaces of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah. His Garden and the New Canal. 
Elephants used in Baghdad. The Dar-as-Saltanah of the Saljuks. 
Tughril Beg and his marriage ceremony. Demolition of this Palace 
by the Caliph Nasir. The Mosque of the Sultan. 

In the early years of the fourth century (the tenth 
a.d.) the plain outside the Shamm&slyah Gate (as 
mentioned in a previous chapter) was occupied by 
the Palace of M finis the Chamberlain, who, after 
governing the Caliphate during most of the reign 
of Muktadir, finally deposed that Caliph in 320 
(a.d. 932), and putting him to death in this Paljice 
of the Shammdslyah, set up his brother K&hir in 
his stead \ The Chamberlain Mftnis, however, was 
himself disgraced and beheaded by K&hir in the 
following year, a period of general disorder followed, 
filling up the reigns of I£fihir R£dl and Muttafcl, 
which was* finally brought to a close under the 
Caliph Mustakft, when in the year 334 (a.d. 946) 
Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah the Buyid, at the head of his 
Daylamite troops, became master of Baghdad. 

1 Ibn-al-Athir, viii. 138, 148, 337. 



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232 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

His troops halted at the Shamm&slyah, and the 
Buyid prince at first took up his quarters in the 
Palace of Mftnis, which; however, shortly after this 
must have been demolished to make way for the 
great palaces of the Buy ids. These were, erected 
in the region which is described as bounded by the 
Z&hir Garden on the lower side, and on the north 
by the dyke on the Shammfislyah plain, built under 
the directions of Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah to prevent the 
overflow of the canals from the Kh&lis, which had 
so often laid this quarter of Baghdad under water. 
With their grounds the Buyid Palaces must have 
covered a very considerable area. The southern 
limit was along the line of the Khuris&n road, while 
to the right and left the Palaces extended over the 
space between the Shamm&slyah and the Barad&n 
roads. The Mosque of Ru§£fah, which was still 
standing, and the quarter round the shrine of Abu 
Hanlfah, came between the palaces arid the river 
bank, while to the east lay the Christian Quarter 
of the Greek House, which from the account in the 
Fihrist (given in a previous chapter) of the Nesto- 
rian monk who had been to China, evidently was 
the centre of a populous region of Baghdad as late 
as the last quarter of the fourth century (the tenth 
a.d.). In their upper part the Buyid Palaces are 
described as lying along the Tigris bank, ' opposite 
to the Fardah' or Upper Harbour, at the mouth 
of the Trench of Tfihir, on the western bank above 
the I^arblyah Quarter; while the northern limit of 
the grounds and gardens was formed by the great 
Dyke of Mu € izz-ad-Dawlah, which starting from the 
Tigris bank crossed the Shamm&slyah Plain. 

No trace of these palaces now remains, but 



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xvii.] The Buyid Palaces 233 

Khatlb, who wrote a century after the Buyid epoch, 
and who has left a full description of their palaces, 
which in his day were already in a state of ruin, 
always speaks of them as situated above or in the 
upper part of the Mukharrim Quarter, from which 
it perhaps follows that some of the palaces lay 
to the south of the line of the Khur£s&n road. 
In his description the Buyid Palaces are generally 
referred to as the D&r-al-Mamlakat (the Palace of 
the Government), as against the Hasan! Palace or 
the D£r-al-Khil&fat (the Palace of the Caliphate), 
where the Caliph reigned, but no longer governed. 
In this D&r-al-Mamlakat the various Buyid princes, 
and after their day the Saljftk Sultans, when resident 
in Baghdad, held their court. 

The first Buyid palace to be built was that of 
Mu € izz-ad-Dawlah, and it is said to have cost thir- 
teen million dirhams, about ,£500,000 sterling *. 
The great Dyke, already mentioned (called Al- 
Musann&t-al-Mu'izzlyah), the remains of which might 
still be seen about the year 700 (a. d. i 300), when 
the author of the Maraud wrote, was carried across 
the low-lying plain of the Shamm&siyah, with a view 
of preventing the waters of the stream, known in 
later times as the Ktirij, from inundating the grounds 
of the new palaces. Inundations, however, none the 
less continued to happen, and in the yeaf 466 (a. d. 
1074) the dyke was ruptured by a flood in the 
Kftrij, the waters of the Tigris having also risen 
under stress of the desert wind which kept them 

1 In Yakut, iii. 318, the date A.H. 305 is given for the completion of 
his palace by Mu'izz ; but this must be a mistake, since he only entered 
Baghdad in 334. It should perhaps be 345 (a.D. 956). Compare also 
Yakut, iiL 194 ; and Marasid, ii. 124. 



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234 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

from flowing off, and immense damage resulted in 
both the eastern and the western quarters of the 
city. A like inundation is again mentioned by Ibn- 
al-Athlr as occurring in the year 554 (a.d. 1159). 
The stream of the Kdrij, which did all this damage, 
would appear to have been identical with, or at 
least to have followed the line formerly taken by 
the canal called the Nahr Fadl, described by Ibn 
Serapion in the fourth century (the tenth a.d.). 
Writing in the seventh century (the thirteenth a. d.) 
Y&kilt mentions further damage which had recently 
been caused by the overflow of the l£ftrij, which he 
writes was a canal that had originally been dug by 
one of the Chosroes of ancient Persia, being the 
work of the same king who had excavated the I£&tul 
Canal or Nahraw&n, from which the Ktirij was 
derived ; and this attribution may have some foun- 
dation in fact since the name Ktirij (or Kftraj) is 
merely the Arabicized form of the Old Persian word 
Kdrah, meaning a canal l . 

Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah died in 356 (a.d. 967), being 
succeeded by his son 'Izz-ad-Dawlah, who, after he 
had misgoverned Baghdad during eleven years, was 
finally deposed by his cousin € Adud-ad-Dawlah, the 
Buyid ruler of F£rs, and in the year 367 (a.d. 978) 
this prince entering Baghdad became master of 
the Caliph and his empire. 'Adud-ad-Dawlah was 
famous for his buildings, among which was the great 
Hospital in Western Baghdad, which has been 
already described, and in Eastern Baghdad he 
enlarged and almost entirely rebuilt the Palace of 

1 See Ibn Serapion, 267 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 62 ; xi. 164 ; Yakut, iv. 
198; De Goeje, Histoire des Carmathes (second edition, 1886), p. 13, 
note 3. 



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xvii.] The Buyid Palaces 235 

Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah. This building is named Saray- 
as-Sulf&n (the Palace of the Sultan) by the Persian 
author of the Guzidah, who says it was famous as 
the finest edifice of its age ; while of the older palace 
of Mu € izz-ad-Dawlah nothing was allowed to remain 
standing but the part called the Bayt-as-Sittlnl 
(the Hall of the Sixty). The land adjacent thereto 
had originally been granted in fief to Sabuktagln, 
Chamberlain of Mu e izz-ad-Dawlah, but this was now 
taken up by the buildings of the new palace, which 
consisted of a great court surrounded by porticoes 
with cupolas built over them, and the western gates 
of the palace opened on the Tigris bank, opposite the 
Fardah or Upper Harbour of the tfarblyah Quarter. 
In his new palace e Adud-ad-Dawlah established 
the hall for the public audience, while the hall of 
the old Palace of Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah was used as the 
place of assembly for the Waztrs: The domed 
porticoes adjacent were divided off to serve as 
Dlw&ns or offices for the Secretaries of State, while 
in the Great Court the Daylamites of his bodyguard 
had their quarters during the summer time. Much 
is said of the garden which e Adud-ad-Dawlah created 
beside his palace, and it is reported to have cost 
a fabulous sum of money. This covered the ground 
originally occupied by the Mayd&n or square for polo 
and horse-racing which Sabuktagln the Chamber- 
lain had made here, and 'A^ud-ad-Dawlah had first 
to spend a considerable sum of money in digging 
up and carrying away the stones and sand of the 
Mayd&n before he could lay down soil suitable for 
growing trees and plants. The account given by 
Khaftb in his history of Baghdad is, he states, 
derived from one who had been a witness of the 



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236 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

costly changes effected by the Buyid prince; and 
he describes how all along the Tigris bank, in front 
of the new palace, the private houses were bought 
up by order of 'Aqiud-ad-Dawlah, and their walls 
having been demolished, the space thus obtained 
after being filled in with soil was planted and added 
to the new gardens. 

The original Maydfin of Sabuktagln was thus 
doubled in size, the whole site being protected from 
the inundation of the river by a dyke, presumably 
forming an extension of the one elsewhere ascribed 
to Mu € izz-ad-Dawlah. These works alone cost € Adud- 
ad-Dawlah two million dirhams (,£80,000), such 
being the sum which the prince admitted to have 
spent when conversing with the writer of the account 
which Khatlb has preserved. For the irrigation of 
the new garden water-wheels on the Tigris bank 
were at first set up, but these having proved insuf- 
ficient, € Adud-ad-Dawlah ordered his engineers to 
make a channel for bringing water direct from the 
streams on the north-east of Baghdad, and for this 
it was found necessary to go as far up as the KhSlis 
river for the head of the new canal '. Further, to 
obtain a level bed a continuous embankment had to 
be constructed, along the top of which the course of 
the new canal was dug ; then great artificial mounds 
had to be built up in two places where for -some 
distance the aqueduct was carried many ells above, 
the level of the surrounding plain, and on either 
side of the long embankment gullies (called Khawr) 
were dug for carrying off the waters in seasons of 
inundation. 

1 The Khilis flowed into the Tigris some six leagues to the north of 
Baghdad, near the town of Baradan : see Ibn Serapion, p. 273. 



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xvii.] The Buyid Palaces 237 

The account goes on to state that for stamping 
down the soil of this great embankment, as also for 
demolishing the walls of the houses whose sites 
were to be used for his garden grounds, 'Adud-ad- 
Dawlah employed elephants. These animals were 
not unknown in Baghdad during the third and fourth 
centuries (ninth and tenth a.d.), and the ones now 
used were probably brought by the Buy ids from 
India. Mas'fidl, the contemporary historian, fre- 
quently mentions elephants in the pages of his 
chronicle; thus he narrates that in 297 (a.d. 910) 
Layth, the Saffarid prince, was as .a prisoner of war 
paraded through the streets of Baghdad mounted 
on an elephant : and the heretic B&bak at Sdmarri 
in 223 (a.d. 838) was similarly treated, on which 
last occasion Mas'fldi states that an immense grey 
elephant was used, this animal having been originally 
sent as a present to the Caliph Mamtin by one of 
the kings of India. The Caliph Mansftr also is said 
to have possessed many elephants, which he was 
fond of employing in state ceremonies, and Mas'tidi 
takes occasion to remark that though a mule hated 
the Bactrian camel exceedingly, he hated an elephant 
even more, and would behave very disagreeably 
when forced into the company of these huge beasts, 
of which behaviour the chronicler gives an amusing 
instance l . 

When the new canal dug by 'Adud-ad-Dawlah 
reached the city limits, and it^ channel passed 
among the houses, the bed was laid in burnt bricks 
or stone blocks set in concrete of lime ; and thus 
at length a plentiful supply of water was brought 
to irrigate the gardens of the new palace; the esti- 

1 Mas'udi, iii. 1 8, 19; vii. 127. 



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238 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

mated cost of these works being set down at five 
million dirhams, or about ,£200,000. In addition 
to the foregoing, we are told that it had been the 
intention of € Adud-ad-Dawlah to have pulled down 
the houses occupying the land between the lower 
portion of the palace and the Z&hir Garden, in 
order thus to connect the southern part of the new 
palace with the river bank below Rusdfah ; but 
death overtook him before these plans could be 
fully carried into effect The palace of € Adud-ad- 
Dawlah continued to be the official residence of the 
Buyid princes who succeeded him, and who governed 
in Baghdad till the middle of the fifth century (the 
eleventh a.d.). Jal&l-ad-Dawlah, the grandson of 
\Adud-ad-Dawlah, who became prince in 416 (a.d. 
1025), made some additional alterations, and turned 
the former hall of the Wazlrs into stables for his 
horses, but the Palace of € Adud-ad-Dawlah other- 
wise remained intact down to the extinction of his 
dynasty. 

After the fall of the Buyids, their great palace 
was occupied by Tughril Beg the Saljflk, who 
entered Baghdad in 447 (a.d. 1055) and assumed 
the reins of government. The southern part of 
the palaces appears to have been that used by the 
Saljftk Sultans, and these buildings more especially 
were known as the Ddr-as-Salfanah l (the Abode 
of the Sultanate). Certain restorations were effected 
by Tughril in 448 (a.d. 1056), and the contemporary 
historian Khatlb speaks of a great fire which oc- 
curred in the year 450 (a. d. 1058), at the moment 

1 In 'Imad-ad-Din, ii. 248, 250, 251, this palace is indifferently 
named the Dar-as-Salfanah, the Dar-as-Sul$an, and the Dar-as- 
Suljaniyah. 



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xvik] The Buyid Palaces 239 

when he, Khatib, was writing his hist&ry of Baghdad, 
but the furniture having been removed in time, the 
walls of the palace were immediately rebuilt, and 
the whole restored to its former splendour. In this 
new palace must have taken place the unprecedented 
espousals of the Abbasid princess, the daughter of 
the Caliph K&im — a collateral descendant therefore 
of the Prophet Muhammad — and Tughril Beg the 
Turkoman, the nominal vassal, but the real master, 
of the Caliph. Tughril Beg had commanded a 
magnificent ceremonial to be arranged for receiving 
the princess, and the marriage took place in 455 
(a.d. 1063), Muslim orthodoxy being much scandalized 
at such a union, though flattered by the spectacle 
of Tughril Beg the conqueror of Western Asia, 
then in his seventieth year, kissing the ground and 
standing humbly in attendance before the princess 
his bride, who was seated in state on a throne 
covered with gold brocade. 

The palace of the D&r-al-Mamlakat — probably 
the southern buildings of the older Buyid palaces — 
became at a later date the residence of Milik Shah, 
the greatest of the Saljftk Sultans and the grand 
nephew of Tughril, when he came to Baghdad in 
479 (a.d. 1086) with his minister the Niz&m-al-Mulk. 
The later Saljflk Sultans also made this palace their 
abode when in Baghdad, leaving a lieutenant here 
to govern in their name when they themselves were 
absent ruling their own people, or engaged in the 
conquest of neighbouring kingdoms. More than 
a century thus elapsed ; the Saljftk power withered 
away, the rule of the Caliphs becoming a mere 
shadow of empire in Eastern Baghdad, and finally 
the palaces of the Buyids and Saljdks having fallen 



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240 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

almost completely to ruin, these were demolished by 
the Caliph N&sir, who in the year 587 (a. d. 1191) 
caused the remaining walls to be levelled with the 
ground \ 

A building which is often mentioned in the 
chronicles during the last two centuries of the 
Caliphate was the. Jdmi'-as-Sult&n, the third of 
the great mosques of Eastern Baghdad (the other 
two being the Rus&fah Mosque and the mosque 
within the precincts of the Palace of the Caliph), 
where the Friday prayers continued to be said, 
until the extinction of the Caliphate. The mosque 
of the Sultan was built by Malik Sh£h the Saljflk, 
its foundations having been laid in the year 485 
(a.d. 1092), and it is said originally to have formed 
part of the Palace of the Sultanate, namely the 
Buyid Palace which the Saljdks had inherited. The 
mosque is described as standing between the Garden 
of Z&hir, which was on the river bank, and the 
Saljftk palace which Yak At in several places refers to, 
incidentally, as lying to the northward 'behind the 
mosque.' The traveller Ibn Jubayr mentions the 
mosque in 580 (a.d. 1184), which was about a 
century after its completion, describing it as standing 
1 outside the wall of the city/ namely the new town 
of East Baghdad, which had grown up round the 
palaces of the Caliphs to the south of the old 
quarter of the Mukharrim. 

Ibn Jubayr adds that he did not know exactly by 
whom the mosque had been built; it stood con- 
tiguous to the Palace of the Sultan, the Sh&hin Sh&h 
(the Great Saljtik often bore this title of King of 

1 Kbatib, folios 97 a to 98 b. Guzidah, under reign of 'Adud-ad- 
Dawlah, in book iv, section 5 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 15, 103 ; Yakut, iy. 44 K 



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xvn.] The Buyid Palaces 241 

Kings), who had been ruler of affairs under one of 
the forefathers of the Caliph Nisir, and the mosque, 
he says, was built by this same Sultan in front of 
his palace, lying distant about one mile from the 
Rus&fah Mosque. As late as the year 727 (a.d. 1327), 
when Ibn Batfitah visited Baghdad, the J&mi'-as- 
Sult&n was still standing 1 , as likewise the Rus&fah 
Mosque and the tomb of Abu Hanlfah ; and these 
apparently were the only three buildings of the 
older Mukharrim and Rusafah Quarters that had 
survived the Mongol conquest. Of them all only 
the shrine of Abu Hanlfah now remains, the one 
solitary relic of the three northern quarters of East 
Baghdad which marks the position of Rusdfah. 

1 Ibn Khallikan, No. 750, p. 7; Yakut, iii. 195 ; iv. 441 ; Ibn Jubayr, 
230; Ibn Batutah, ii. in. 



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CHAPTER XVIII 



THE TALACES OF THE CALIPHS 

The Palaces of Western and of Eastern Baghdad. The Palace of 
Ja'far the Barmecide ; extended by Mam fin. Hasan ibn Sahl and his 
daughter Buran. The Hasani Palace restored to Mu'tamid. The 
Taj Palace begun : the Firdus Palace. The Palace of the Pleiades. 
The Great Mosque of the Palace. The completion of the Taj. The 
Shafibiyah Palace. The Dome of the Ass. The Wild Beast Park 
and other Palaces. The reception of the Greek Envoys from Con- 
stantine Porphyrogenitus. The Palace of the Tree. The Garden of 
Kahir. The Peacock Palace. The Hall of the Wazfrs. The burning 
of the Taj Palace. Building of the second Taj. The Gardens of the 
Rakkah. 

The Palace of the Golden Gate, in the centre 
of the Round City, and the Khuld Palace, on the 
river bank at the western end of the Main Bridge, 
have been described in chapter ii, and it was in 
one or other of these that, when the Caliph Mansftr 
was resident in Baghdad, he held his court. His 
son and successor Mahdl had occupied, during his 
fathers lifetime, the Palace of Rusifah in the 
northern quarter of East Baghdad, but after 
succeeding to the Caliphate he went to live in 
West Baghdad, which continued to be the seat of 
government during his time, as also during the 
reigns of his two sons the Caliphs H&df and H&rfln- 
ar-Rashld. 



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The Palaces of the Caliphs 243 

The earliest of the great southern palaces of 
East Baghdad, where, during the last four centuries 
of the Abbasid dynasty, the Caliphs held their 
court, had originally been a pleasure house, built 
by Ja'far the Barmecide, brother-in-law and boon 
companion of H&rtin-ar-Rashid. It stood in what 
was then the open country on the Tigris bank below 
the Mukharrim Quarter, at a considerable distance 
therefore from RusAfah and the populous northern 
quarters of East Baghdad. This Palace of Ja'far 
the Barmecide, which became the nucleus of the 
great congeries of palaces that afterwards were 
known as the D£r-al-Khil£fat (the Abode of the 
Caliphate), was at first called the Kasr Ja'fart, 
but afterwards, having come to be inhabited in 
turn by Mamfln and by the Wazlr Hasan ibn 
Sahl, it was more generally named the l£asr 
Mamtinl or the Kasr yasanl. In its grounds, 
after the return of the Caliphate from Sfimarrd, 
the great mosque of the palace (Jami'-al-Kasr) was 
erected, while adjacent to the Flasani, as will be 
described later, were built two other palaces, namely 
the Firdfls, upstream, and the Palace of the T&j, 
downstream; all three buildings thus standing on 
the Tigris bank, with great gardens stretching to 
the back, enclosing many minor palaces within their 
precincts. 

Y&kflt gives us the history of these palaces, and 
in the first place relates how Ja'far the Barmecide, 
being much given to wine-bibbing in the company 
of poets and singers, was frequently reproved by 
his father Yahyfi — at that time Wazlr of Hfirtin-ar- 
Rashld — for the scandal that he was creating. Ja'far 
professed inability to alter his ways, but in order 

r 2 



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244 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

to shun the observation of strict Moslems who 
abhorred wine and singing, he agreed to build 
himself a palace apart, for the celebration of his 
joyous assemblies, on the unoccupied lands to the 
south of the Mukharrim Quarter. Ja'far was at 
this time still the favourite boon companion of 
H&rfln-ar-Rashtd, who showed much interest in the 
building, which was indeed so remarkable for its 
magnificence, that when all was completed an 
astute friend advised Ja'far to tell Hdrtin that 
this palace was in reality built as a present for 
Mamfin, and thus to avoid the well-known jealousy 
of the Caliph. 

Mamfin, the heir-apparent, from the time of his 
birth had been put under the nominal guardian- 
ship of Ja'far, and the Caliph graciously accepting 
the gift for his son, the new palace, at first called 
the Ja'fari, came afterwards to be known as the 
Mamfint, though it remained exclusively in the 
occupation of Ja'far until the fall of the Barmecides. 
After the tragic death of Ja'far, the young prince 
Mamftn entered into full possession of the palace, 
and it became one of his favourite places of re- 
sidence : he enlarged the buildings, added a Mayd&n 
or square for horse racing and the Persian game of 
polo (Sulj&n), which, according to Mas'tidi, the Caliph 
Hirfin-ar-Rashtd had been the first to play in 
Baghdad, and began to lay out the Wild Beast 
Park, which afterwards became one of its notable 
features. Mamfln also built a gate opening on 
the plain to the eastward, and another through 
which was brought the branch canal from the Nahr 
Mu'allci, as is described by Ibn Serapion ; further, 
he laid out the quarter adjacent, called after him the 



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xviii.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 245 

Mamflnlyah (which will be noticed more fully in a 
subsequent chapter), where his attendants and 
followers built themselves houses ; all these altera- 
tions in the Ja'fart Palace, according to Y&kfit, 
having been effected during the latter years of the 
reign of H&rtin, and prior to Mamfin being sent 
to assume the governorship of KhurfisSn with the 
eastern provinces of the empire. 

The Ja'farl or Mamflnl Palace appears to have 
remained unoccupied for many years after the 
departure of Mamfin for the east, and it will be 
remembered how civil war broke out between Amin 
and Mamfin shortly after the death of H&rfln-ar- 
Rashid, ending in the siege of Baghdad, when Amln, 
having evacuated the eastern side, retired first to 
the Khuld Palace and later to the shelter of the 
Round City, where he intrenched himself in the 
Palace of the Golden Gate. The ruin of these 
two palaces of Western Baghdad appears to have 
been largely the result of this twelvemonths 
siege; though the Khuld suffered less than the 
other, and when some five years after the death 
of Amin, the Caliph Mamfln finally returned to 
Baghdad, he at first took up his residence on the 
western side in the Palace of the Khuld, leaving 
the Mamtinl Palace in the possession of his Waztr 
Hasan, generally known as Ibn Sahl, who had 
preceded him to Baghdad as viceroy of c Ir£k. 
From the time of his accession Mamdn had been 
entirely under the influence of the two sons of 
Sahl — a Persian by birth— one of whom, Fadl Ibn 
Sahl, had remained in personal attendance on the 
Caliph in Khurfis&n, acting as his Wazlr, while 
the brother, Hasan, had been sent forward to re- 



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246 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

establish the authority of Mamfln in Mesopotamia 
after the devastation of the civil war. Fadl lost his 
life, in Khurisin, by a palace intrigue, but Hasan, 
after the arrival of the Caliph in Baghdad, estab- 
lished himself firmly in the position of sole Wazlr 
to Mamtin, and then sought to perpetuate his power 
by marrying his daughter Bfirin to the Caliph. 

The espousals of Mamfln and BGr&n, which were 
celebrated at the domain of Fam-as-$illi, some miles 
down the Tigris below Baghdad, have passed to 
a proverb for their splendour, and for the sums 
spent by Hasan Ibn Sahl to do honour to his 
royal son-in-law. As a slight return for his enter- 
tainment, the Caliph after his marriage presented 
the Mamflnl Palace as a free gift to Hasan; and 
the minister for a time inhabited it, but with much 
prudence finally made it over to his daughter Bflr&n, 
having in part rebuilt it and added to the grounds. 
In this palace Bflr&n lived her long life — surviving 
the glories of the reign of Mamfin, and living to see 
the Caliphate transferred from Baghdad to S&marrS 
— and to her filial affection, doubtless quite as much 
as to the restorations effected by her father, is due 
the fact that the palace from this time onwards was 
generally known under the name of the Kasr-al- 
PJasant (after the Wazlr Flasan Ibn Sahl), though 
later writers still at times refer to it under the name 
of the Mamfint, or the Ja'fart Palace. 

In 218 (a.d. 833) Mamfln had been succeeded by 
his brother Mu'ta§im, the last of the three sons of 
H&rfln-ar-Rashld who attained the Caliphate, and 
he, according to one account, inhabited the Palace 
of Mamfln (namely the HasanI) for some time after 
his accession. Later, however, he built himself the 



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xvin.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 247 

palace (already described) in the Mukharrim Quarter, 
to the south of the Khur&sdn Gate, living there till 
the year 221 (a.d. 836), when the excesses of the 
Turk body-guard, with other events, brought about 
the removal of the Caliphate to S&marrd. This city, 
which he partly rebuilt, remained the seat of govern- 
ment for more than half a century, and during the 
reign of eight Caliphs, though one of these, namely 
Musta'ln, fleeing from SAmarrd (as has been men- 
tioned in a previous chapter), came down the river 
to Baghdad, and there was besieged by the Turk 
body-guard of his rival the Caliph Mu'tazz. It will 
be remembered that the headquarters of Musta'ln 
during this siege were in the Palace of Mahdl in 
Rusfifah, the chief attack of the besieging army 
being directed against the Shamm&styah Quarter, 
and the ruin of the three northern quarters of 
Eastern Baghdad may be dated chiefly from the 
events of this unfortunate year 251 (a.d. 865). The 
second siege of Baghdad ended with the death of 
Musta'In, whereupon Mu'tazz, his cousin, was recog- 
nized as sole Caliph, he and the next two puppet 
Caliphs continuing to live on at S&marrA under the 
tyranny of the Turk body-guard. 

During the Zanj rebellion, which broke out in 
Lower Mesopotamia during the Caliphate of Mu'tamid 
— the last of those who lived at SSmarr4 — the Regent 
Muwaffak, brother of the Caliph and the actual 
ruler of the empire, leaving Mu'tamid to reside at 
Sdmarrd, came down to Baghdad, and made the 
older capital his headquarters during the many years 
that were spent in fighting the rebels. The long 
residence in Baghdad of the actual ruler of the 
empire doubtless paved the way for the return of 



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248 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the Caliphs to their original metropolis. This came 
about shortly after the death of Muwaffak, when 
Mu'tamid, six months before his own death, finally 
abandoned S&marrd to take up his permanent abode 
in Baghdad, which, indeed, he had temporarily visited 
on more than one occasion. On the death of 
Mu'tamid in 279 (a.d. 892) his body was taken back 
to Sctmarrd for burial among the tombs of his im- 
mediate predecessors, but his nephew Mu'tadid (the 
son of Muwaffak), who succeeded as Caliph, remained 
in Baghdad, which during the next four centuries, 
and until the fall of the Caliphate, became once 
more the residence of the Abbasids. 

It is related by Y&ktit that when Mu'tamid re- 
turned to take up his residence in Baghdad, he 
found Bfirfin the widow of Mamdn still alive, and 
in occupation of the tlasanl Palace, where she had 
continued to live undisturbed after the death of her 
husband and of her father Hasan Ibn Sahl. 
Mu'tamid, who required a palace to live in, re- 
quested Bftr£n to remove elsewhere, promising her 
another palace in exchange, and the request of the 
Caliph was naturally equivalent to a command. 
Btir£n pleaded for and obtained a short delay under 
pretext of arranging her affairs, and forthwith set 
about putting the palace and its furniture into 
thorough repair, so that when she finally removed 
to another house, the feasant Palace was made over 
to Mu'tamid in perfect order — Yikflt describing 
how its halls were spread with gold-woven carpets 
and reed matting, its doors hung with needful 
curtains, and its storerooms filled with all requisite 
vessels for the service of the Caliph, while in atten- 
dance were numerous slave girls and eunuchs. 



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xviii.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 249 

Mu'tamid, we are told, expressed a due regard for 
what the widow of his great uncle had done for him, 
and proceeded to take up his abode in the Hasanl 
Palace, where he died shortly after, as has been 
said in the last chapter, poisoned by Mushklr his 
steward, who saw his advantage in the reign of 
a new Caliph. 

Yak&t has taken this anecdote about B&r£n from 
the history of Baghdad by Khatlb (as usual, without 
acknowledgement), but with an important difference, 
for Khatlb gives it as the Caliph Mu'tadid (nephew 
of Mu'tamid) who received back the palace from 
Bfir£n (he reigned from a.h. 279 to 289). Khatlb 
thereupon adds that he perforce doubts the authen- 
ticity of this anecdote, which he had copied from 
an earlier author, because Bftrcin herself died some 
years before Mu'tadid came to the throne. Now 
Btir&n, who lived to be over eighty, died at Baghdad 
in 2 7 1 (a. d. 884), as is mentioned" in another passage 
by Khatlb and confirmed on good authority, that is 
to say, some eight years before the accession of 
Mu'tadid ; but if the (unacknowledged) alteration 
made by Y£kftt be accepted — namely if we read 
Mu'tamid for Mu'tadid, and the two names only 
differ by a single letter — there will be no antecedent 
improbability in the story reported by Khatlb. In 
the year 270, for instance, the chronicles state that 
Mu'tamid was on a temporary visit to Baghdad 
(before he finally settled there in 279), and he might 
very well on this occasion have received back the 
Hasanl Palace from B&r&n, with all the circumstances 
related in the anecdote l . 

1 Yakut, i. 806 to 809; Mas'udi, vii. 65; viii. 296; Ya'kubi, 255 ; 
Khatib, folio 92 ; Ibn Khallikan, No. 119, p. 16 ; Abu-1-Mahasin, ii. 72. 



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250 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

With the accession of Mu'tadid and the permanent 
establishment of the Caliphate in East Baghdad, 
a new era of palace-building was inaugurated, for 
this Caliph not only enlarged the Flasant and laid 
the foundations of the T&j, but built for himself two 
other palaces, namely the Firdfls and the Thurayyd. 
The y asant Palace wafe added to by buildings erected 
on the Mayd&n (or Square), which Mamtin had left, 
and the whole was surrounded by a wall, after a new 
Mayd£n had been laid out in the lands to the east- 
ward, where private houses had been pulled down 
to provide the necessary space. Adjacent to the 
Hasani, but higher upstream, Mu'tadid built the 
Kasr-al-Firdfis (the Palace of Paradise), at the place 
where the waters of the Mu'alld Canal flowed out 
into the Tigris; and in the gardens of this palace 
was a lake (as has already been mentioned in 
chapter xvi) fed by a channel coming from an off- 
shoot of the Mftsi Canal, at the bifurcation neanthe 
Mukharrim Gate. The Firdfis Palace had a gate 
called the B&b-ai-Firdtis, and apparently at one period 
the name of the Firdfls was commonly used to denote 
the Palaces of the Caliph in general, for in Arabic 
the word FirdHs either stands for the Paradise of 
Heaven (and as such applied to a palace) or may be 
taken to signify a wild beast park (in Greek napd- 
8(t<ro$) t such as was often made, following the ancient 
Persian custom, in the purlieus of the royal abode. 

The Palace of the Pleiades (XL asr«ath-Thurayy&), 
as has been already mentioned in chapter xiii, lay 
on the Mfisi Canal two miles distant from the 
Hasani Palace, and its site must therefore have 
been outside the later city wall, which was built 
round the southern quarters of East Baghdad some 



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xviii.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 251 

two centuries later than the time of Mu'tadid. The 
Pleiades were, of course, beyond the precincts of the 
palace gardens on the Tigris bank, and the Caliph 
Mu'tadid, for his convenience, had this distant palace 
connected with the PJasanl by an underground 
passage, two Arab miles in length, along which his 
women and their attendants could pass from the 
Hasanl to the Thurayyi without appearing in public^ 
According to Mas'fidt, a contemporary authority, 
the Palace of the Pleiades cost Mu'tadid the im- 
mense sum of 400,000 din&rs (equivalent to about 
,£200,000), and its grounds are said to have originally 
covered an area three leagues in extent. The 
passage-way two miles in length, above mentioned, 
was vaulted throughout, and ran under the houses 
an8 streets which came to be built outside the 
Palaces of the Caliphs ; it long continued in use, 
only falling to ruin at the time of the first great 
inundation of Baghdad — presumably that of the 
year 466 (a.d. 1074), when the bursting of a dyke 
below the Kflrij Canal had laid the whole of the 
eastern city under water 1 . 

In addition to the two palaces of the Firdfis and 
the Thurayy£, Mu'tadid also laid the foundations 
of the famous Palace of the Crown (I£asr-at-T£j), 
which when completed and enlarged by succeeding 
sovereigns became in after centuries the chief 
official residence of the Caliphs. Mu'tadid, how- 
ever, did not live to carry out his plans for the T£j, 
and he had even, it was said, countermanded the 
building in the year 286 (a. d. 899), on his return from 
the expedition against Amid in Upper Mesopotamia, 

1 Ibn Serapion, 22; Yakut, i. 808, 924; iii. 871 ; iv. 846; Khatib, 
folio 92 ; Mas'udi, viii. 1 16 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 62. 



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252 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

for he was led to fear that from its position the 
T&j Palace would be invaded by smoke from the 
neighbouring houses of the city suburbs beyond 
the wall of the precincts. 

In the year 289 (a.d. 902) Mu'tadid was succeeded 
by his son C AH Muktaft, who, during a reign of six 
years, carried to completion the works that his 
father had begun, and built the great mosque for 
the Friday prayers, within the Palace of the Caliphs. 
This was known as the Jdml-al-Kasr, and was the 
second of the three great mosques of East Baghdad 
(the first having been the Rus&fah Mosque, and the 
third the Saljtik Mosque of the Sultan, both already 
described). The ground upon which the palace 
mosque was built had been previously occupied by the 
dungeons where Mu'tadid kept his state prisoners, 
these being certain vaulted chambers which had origi- 
nally been used for housing the workmen who built 
the Hasan! Palace. 'Alt Muktafi at the beginning 
of his reign ordered these vaults to be -demolished, 
and a mosque, intended at first only for his personal 
use, to be built in their room. This mosque, however, 
was afterwards thrown open to the people, who, 
according to Khatfb, from an early date took a liking 
to come hither for their daily prayers, and here 
they would sit till the close of night, discussing 
their private affairs. The palace mosque continued 
in use during the remaining four centuries of the 
Abbasid Caliphate ; at the time of the Mongol siege 
it was set on fire and partially burnt, but by order 
of Hfll&gfi was afterwards rebuilt, though doubtless 
shorn of much of its former magnificence ; and there 
is reason to believe that some vestiges of this 
mosque of the palace are still standing near the 



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xvin.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 253 

ruined minaret of the modern Stik-al-Ghazl (the 
Thread Market), which with other existing remains 
will be more fully noticed in the concluding chapter 
of the present work l . 

Besides building the great mosque, 'All Muktafl 
also completed the Palace of the Crown (Kasr-at- 
T&j), which his father had begun. To obtain the 
needful materials the Caliph caused the Kasr-al- 
Kimil (the Palace of Perfection), by whom built is 
not stated, to be demolished; and he also threw 
down a part of the great White Palace of the 
Chosroes at Mad&in (Ctesiphon), thus still further 
carrying on the work of destruction which Manstir 
had begun (as related in chapter iii), when he 
attempted to make use of stones brought from here 
for the building of Baghdad. In later times the 
Palace of the Tcij was also apparently known as the 
D&r-ash-Shltibiyah 2 , the meaning of which name is 
obscure, but it is under this name that it is referred 
to by Hamd-AUah, the Persian writer of the eighth 
century (fourteenth a.d.). As already stated, the 

1 Khatib, folio 101 a, b; Rash id-ad- Din, 302, 308; Niebuhr, ii. 242. 

1 The name varies in the MSS. of the Nuzhat : the form here given is 
that found in both the printed text, p. 147, and the lithographed edition 
of Bombay. The British Museum MS. Add. 7707, gives the reading 
as Ddr-as-Saltanah, which was the name of the hall of audience in the 
later, second, Palace of the Taj (see below, p. 262), besides being 
more generally applied to the great Saljuk Palace, as stated in the 
previous chapter. Of the Paris MSS., No. 127 of the Bibliotheque 
Nationale agrees with the printed text, while Nos. 128 and 129 give 
the reading Ddr-ash-Shattyah, which might be translated ' the River 
Bank Palace.' DAr-ash-Sh&tiblyah would have the unlikely meaning 
of 'the Xativa Palace,' after the town of Xativa in the province of 
Valencia in Spain, or (more grammatically) this name might be 
translated 'the Palace of the woman of Xativa'; but both significations 
are improbable, and the origin of the name is nowhere explained by 
the Moslem authorities. 



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254 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Palace of the T&j stood on the Tigris bank below 
the Hasant Palace, and its foundations were sup- 
ported by a great dyke which projected out into 
the stream. It was more especially for making this 
dyke that the ruins at Mad&in were used as a 
quarry, quantities of burnt bricks being dug out 
from the foundations of the Palace of the Chosroes, 
while the ancient battlements of its remaining walls 
were taken down and carried up the river to crown 
the summit of the T£j. 

This dyke, stretching out into the Tigris, was 
a special feature of the T&j Palace, and during the 
great inundation of the year 466 (a.d. 1074) all 
the boats of Baghdad were moored for safety under 
its wall. The main building of the Tdj rose like 
a ' crown ' above this dyke, supported on five vaults 
or arches, these resting on ten dwarf columns, each 
five ells (or about 8 feet) in height 'All Muktaft 
also constructed halls of assembly and divers 
cupolas in the immediate neighbourhood of the Tdj ; 
one especially was known as the Cupola of the Ass 
(Kubbat-al-tfim&r), this being a tower ascended by 
a spiral stair, of such an easy gradient that the 
Caliph could ride to the summit on a donkey trained 

{to an ambling gait. Thus without fatigue he could 
enjoy the view over the surrounding country, for 
the height of this tower is described as very great, 
and in plan it was semicircular. A proof of the 
immense extent of the buildings erected by c Ali 
Muktaft may be deduced from the report given by 
the contemporary Mas'fidl, that this Caliph, at his 
death, left nine thousand riding-animals, to wit 
horses, mules, and swift dromedaries, which were 
all housed within the palace stables. 



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xviii.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 255 

The next Caliph, Muktadir, brother of 'All Muk- 
taft, who began his reign in 295 (a. d. 908), added 
considerably to the buildings round the T&j, estab- 
lishing a Wild Beast Park in the grounds stretching 
between the Palaces of the T&j and the Thurayyi 
on the Mflsi Canal. A general idea of what the 
Palaces of the Caliph had come to be at this time 
is to be gained from the description which Khatlb 
has left us of the reception granted to the Greek 
ambassadors sent by Constantine Porphyrogenitus 
to Baghdad in 305 (a.d. 917) 1 . The envoys, on 
their arrival, had been lodged in the upper part of 
East Baghdad, and later they were brought in state 
by the Great Road from the Shamm&slyah Gate, 
through the Mukharrim Gate to the Bdb-al-'Ammah 
(the Public Gate) of the palace precincts, troops in 
double line keeping the road for the whole of this 
distance. Before being introduced to the presence 
of the Caliph, who received them in the Palace of 
the T&j, the envoys were shown over the various 
buildings within the precincts, and these at the date 
in question are said to have numbered twenty-three 
separate palaces. 

Entering through the hall of the Great Public 
Gate, the envoys were taken first to the palace 
known as the Kh&n-al-Khayl (the Riding House), 
which is described as for the most part built with 
porticoes of marble columns. On the right side of 
this house stood five hundred mares with saddles 
of gold or silver, while on the left side stood five 
hundred mares with brocade saddle-cloths and long 
head-covers; and each mare was held by the 

1 Translated in full in the Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society for 
January, 1897, p. 35- 



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256 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

groom wearing a magnificent uniform. Beyond 
this palace, after passing through various corridors 
and halls opening one into the other, lay the Park 
of the Wild Beasts, with separate houses for the 
various kind of wild animals, entered from the park, 
where all the beasts would herd together, or come 
up close to the visitors, sniffing and eating from 
their hands. The elephant-house was near this, in 
which were kept four elephants, caparisoned in 
peacock silk brocade ; and on the back of each sat 
eight men of Sind, and javelin-men with fire. Then 
in another palace there were one hundred lions, 
fifty to the right hand and fifty to the left, each lion 
being held by its keeper, for about its head and 
neck were iron chains ; and in diverse neighbour- 
ing gardens there were other elephants and lions, 
also giraffes and hunting-leopards, which were all 
duly brought out for the inspection of the Greek 
ambassadors. 

Among the most famous buildings erected by 
Muktadir was the Palace of the Tree (D&r-ash- 
Shajarah), so called from the tree made of silver, 
weighing 500,000 dirhams (or about 50,000 ounces), 
which stood in the middle of its palace surrounded 
by a great circular tank filled with clear water. The 
tree had eighteen branches, every branch having 
numerous twigs, on which sat various kinds of 
mechanical birds in gold and silver, both large and 
small. Most of the branches of the tree were of 
silver, but some were of gold, and they spread into 
the air carrying leaves of divers colours, the leaves 
moving as the wind blew, while the birds through 
a concealed mechanism piped and sang. On either 
side of this palace, to the right and left of the tank, 



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xviii.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 257 

stood life-sized figures in two rows, each row 
consisting of fifteen horsemen, mounted upon 
their mares, both the men and the steeds being 
clothed and caparisoned in brocade. In their 
hands the horsemen carried long-poled javelins, 
and those on the right appeared to be attacking 
their adversaries in the row of horsemen on the 
left-hand side. It is further stated that in the 
time of Muktadir the halls of the Palace of the 
Firdfls were hung round with ten thousand gilded 
breastplates ; and in a neighbouring corridor 
that was 300 ells in length, were ranged on 
stands ten thousand other pieces of armour and 
arms, to wit, bucklers, helmets, casques, cuirasses, 
and coats of mail, with ornamented quivers and 
bows. 

Near the Firdtis stood the palace called the New 
Kiosk (Al-Jawsak-al-Muhdith), which lay in the 
midst of gardens. In its centre was a tank made 
of tin-plate {Rasds KaCi), round which flowed a 
stream in a conduit also of tin plate, which is described 
as being more lustrous than polished silver. This 
tank was 30 ells in length by 20 across, and 
beside it were set four magnificent pavilions with 
gilt seats adorned with gold embroidery of Dabik 
work. Round this tank extended the garden, with 
lawns wherein grew dwarf palm-trees to the number 
of four hundred, the height of each being 5 ells 
(about 8 feet), the entire trunk of the trees, from 
root to spathe, being enclosed in carved teak wood, 
encircled with gilt copper rings. These palms bore 
full-grown dates, and by careful cultivation, in almost 
all seasons, the fresh ripe fruit might be found on 
their branches. In the garden beds also were melons 



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258 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of the sort called DastabOyah, and of many other 
species besides *. 

Probably within the precincts of the T&j Palace 
and near the river bank had been the beautiful little 
garden laid out by the Caliph Kdhir, brother and 
successor of Muktadir, where (according to Mas'tidi, 
a contemporary, who probably had himself visited 
the place) the unfortunate K&hir, after his deposi- 
tion, was received in audience by his nephew the 
Caliph RSdi. The description of the little garden, 
as follows, is taken from the history of Mas'ftdi, 
called the Meadows of Gold, when relating the inter- 
view : — ' Now the Caliph K&hir had made in a certain 
one of the courts of the palace a garden about a 
Jarlb (or a third of an acre) in extent, which he had 
planted with orange-trees brought from Basrah and 
'Omfin, of such kinds as have been imported from 
the lands of India. And these trees having become 
interlaced, the fruits thereof hung like stars, red and 
yellow, in among the branches, while round and 
about various kinds of shrubs were planted with 
sweet-smelling herbs and flowers. Further, in this 
same court were kept many species of birds, such as 
turtle-doves and ring-doves, blackbirds and parrots, 
all of which had been brought thither from foreign 
countries and far-off cities, so that the garden was 
in the extreme beautiful, and the Caliph K&hir, who 
loved to drink wine, had been wont to hold his 
assemblies in this place.' 

In after days the Palace of the Tree (Dir-ash- 
Shajarah), built under Muktadir as already described, 
was used as a state prison by later Caliphs, who, 
as a measure of precaution, kept their nearer rela- 

1 'Arib, 64 ; Khatib, folios 93 b to 96 a ; Yakut, ii. 251. 



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xvin.] The Palaces of the Caliphs 259 

tions here in honourable confinement, duly attended 
by numerous servants and amply supplied with 
every luxury, but forbidden, under pain of death, to 
go beyond its walls. In the neighbourhood were 
also other palaces, for during the fourth century of 
the Hijrah (the tenth a.d.), after the Buyid princes 
had become masters of Baghdad, the Caliphs being 
no longer allowed to take any part in the govern- 
ment, spent much of their spare time building 
magnificent kiosks within the precincts of the royal 
domain. Thus the Caliph Mutl\ who reigned from 
334 to 363 (a.d. 946 to 974), erected the Peacock 
Palace (D4r-at-Taw4wts) ; also the Murabba'ah and 
the Muthammanah Palaces (to wit the Square and 
the Octagon House) ; possibly too the palace called 
the D£r Shirshir, the situation of which is unknown ; 
and at this period, when the palaces of the Caliphs 
may be considered to have attained their utmost 
extent and splendour, it is recorded that a certain 
treasurer of f Adud-ad-Dawlah was wont to say that 
the house of the Caliph in Baghdad covered ground 
equalling in extent the whole city of Shlriz, the 
chief town of F&rs, and the capital of his master 
the Buyid prince. 

A century and a half later than the time of the 
Buyid supremacy — when Sultan Sanj&r, the last of 
the great Saljftks, was the protector of the Cali- 
phate — the Caliph Mustarshid, who reigned from 
512 to 529 (a.d. 1 1 18 to 1 1 35), added the great 
hall to the Tfij Palace, which was used for the 
reception of the Wazlrs, who, at the chief festivals, 
came to offer their congratulations to the Caliph. 
This hall went by the name of its gateway, and 
was called the B&b-al-Hujrah (the Privy Chamber 

s 2 



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260 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Gate), and here Mustarshid and the succeeding 
Caliphs were wont to sit in state, bestowing robes 
of honour on their favourites and on the ministers 
appointed by the Saljflk Sultan to govern Baghdad 
and the province of Mesopotamia \ 

In the long list of the Abbasid Caliphs there are 
two (whose reigns are separated by an interval of 
two and a half centuries) who figure in our trans- 
literation under the similar titles of Muktaft and 
Muktaft The first, 'All Muktaft, who began his 
reign in 289 (a.d. 902), has his name spelt with an 
ordinary k, while the name of the last, Muhammad 
Muktaft, who ascended the throne in 530 (a.d. i 136), 
is spelt with the dotted k y and for greater distinction 
their personal names have been given in these 
pages with the title. In the reign of the first, 'AH 
Muktaft, the Palace of the T&j was completed ; in 
the reign of the last, Muhammad Muktaft, it was 
burnt to the ground — this occurring in the year 549 
(a.d. 1 1 54), when the building having been struck 
by lightning, took fire, which continuing to burn 
unchecked during nine days, both the Palace of the 
Crown and the adjacent Dome of the Ass were 
reduced to ashes. The Caliph Muhammad Muktaft 
immediately commanded that the Dome of the Ass 
should be rebuilt on the original plan, but dying 
before his orders could be carried to completion, 
the building was stopped by his successor, and thus 
remained in an unfinished state till the year 574 
(a.d. i i 78), when Mustadt, his grandson, had the 
half-built walls demolished. 

Their foundations Mustadi ordered to be made 

1 Yakut, i. 809 ; ii. 520, 521,524 ; iv. 34 ; Khatib, folios 92 a, b, 93 a, b ; 
lbn-al-Athir, x. 62 ; Marasid, L 112, 383 ; Mas'udi, viii. 225, 336. 



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xviii.] . The Palaces of the Caliphs 261 

level with the top of the great dyke on which the 
older Palace of the T&j had stood, and causing 
the charred ruins also of this palace to be dug up, 
the space thus obtained was used in part for the 
great court of the new, or second, Palace of the TSj, 
which Mustadi now proceeded to build. This new 
T£j stood somewhat higher up the river bank than 
where Mu'tadid had built the first palace ; but it 
overhung the river like the original building, and 
is described as standing partly on the great dyke, 
round and under which the waters of the Tigris 
flowed. The main building, which rose to a height 
of 70 ells (about 105 feet) above the water 
level, was vaulted, the lower story like the first 
Palace of the T&j being supported on five great 
arches, springing from a like number of marble 
columns, while in the centre a sixth column sup- 
ported the central point of the vaulting on which 
the building rested. 

On the western bank of the Tigris, in the Karkh 
Quarter and opposite the T&j Palace, there were 
in these later times large and very beautiful gardens, 
where the Caliphs were wont to land when they 
crossed the river; and these pleasure grounds of 
the Caliph were known as the Gardens of the 
Rakkah, a name which, as already mentioned, is 
used to denote any low-lying plain subject to inun- 
dation from the river floods. The second Palace 
of the T4j was the chief glory of the latter days of 
the Caliphate ; in one of its halls the new Caliph, 
on his accession, was wont to receive from his 
subjects the oath of allegiance, sitting under the 
principal dome at a window that looked out on to 
the Great Court, and this part of the palace appears 



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262 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

to have been more especially known as the D&r- 
as-Saltanah (the Hall of the Sultanate), a name 
which, as already mentioned, had possibly been 
also given to the earlier Palace of the T&j l . 

1 See above, note 2 to p. 253; Yakut, i. 809; ii. 804; Marasid, 
i. 193. 



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CHAPTER XIX 



THE PALACE GATES AND ADJOINING QUARTERS 

^ 

The Precincts, called the Harim or Haramayn, and its Wall. The 
Quarters of the Mualla Canal. The Town WalL Gates of the 
Palace. The Bab Gharabah and the Bib Suk-at-Tarar. The Needle- 
makers' Wharf: the Palace of the Cotton Market. The Palaces of 
the Princess, Dar Khatun and Dar-as-Sayyidah. The Mustansirfyah 
College. The Palace Mosque. The Badr Gate and Palace. The 
Elephant House. Market of the Perfumers. Other Markets round 
the Square of the Mosque. The Rayhaniyin Palace. The Dargah-i- 
Khatun and the Libraries. The Nubian Gate and the Great Cross of 
the Crusaders. The Public Gate. Gates of the Palace Suburbs and 
the Garden Gate. The Gate of Degrees. General arrangement in 
the later Palaces. 

The Palaces of the Caliphs, the more important 
of which have been mentioned in the foregoing 
chapter, consisted of a great complex of buildings, 
which, with their gardens and courts, occupied an 
area nearly a square mile in extent, surrounded by 
a great wall with many gates. This area of the 
Palaces is generally referred to by Y&ktit in the 
seventh century (the thirteenth a.d.) under the 
name of the Harim, which may be translated 
the Precinct or the Sanctuary; while Hamd- Allah 
in the succeeding century speaKs of it as the 
Haramayn, another form of the same word, but 
in the dual, hence meaning the Double Sanctuary, 



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264 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

this name probably having reference to the inner 
and the outer precincts. 

It is uncertain by whom the great wall round 
the palace-area was built. Mu'tadid, the first 
Caliph to reside permanently in Baghdad after the 
return from Simarr&, when he enlarged the Hasanl 
(as already mentioned), at the close of the third 
century (the ninth a.d.), is said to have surrounded 
this palace by a wall, which in part may be identical 
with the wall which Y4ktit describes in the begin- 
ning of the seventh century (the thirteenth a.d.). 
This last, however, enclosed all the Palaces in 
a semicircular sweep, it began at the Tigris bank 
above the gardens and came down to the river 
again below the T4j, and in this were the gates to 
be mentioned presently. 

Outside the precincts and surrounding the Palaces 
of the Caliphs on the north, east, and south (the 
Tigris occupying their western side), stretched the 
later quarters of East Baghdad, which dated from 
the middle of the fifth century (the eleventh a.d.), 
and these quarters were enclosed by the city wall, 
with its four gates (one to the north, two to the 
east, and one to the south), which thus followed 
a line more or less parallel with the inner wall 
surrounding the Palaces. 

The city wall and gates will be described in the 
following chapters, when the outlying suburbs of 
Eastern Baghdad come to be dealt with; for we 
have first to notice the inner wall which encircled 
the Palaces of the Caliphs, with those quarters of 
the city which stood more immediately adjacent to 
the gates of the palace. Y4kflt describes the palace 
precincts as in his time covering ground to an 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 265 

extent equalling a third part of the whole city of 
East Baghdad, being divided from the town quarters 
by the inner wall pierced with seven gateways. 
These were, three to the north, then near the 
north-east corner the two main gates of the palace 
precincts, below which for the space of a mile the 
wall had no gateway except the small garden gate, 
till finally the lowest gate was reached which opened 
to the south, close to the Tigris bank, and below the 
Palace of the Tfij 1 . 

The uppermost of the gates in the palace wall 
was the B&b-al-Gharabah, which took its name from 
a Gharabah or Babylonian willow-tree which grew 
here. On the Tigris near this gate was the 
Mashra'at-al-Ibriyln (the Wharf of the Needle- 
makers), which probably lay close to the eastern 
end of the later Bridge of Boats, and this wharf 
is often mentioned in connexion with the next gate 
in the palace wall, called the B&b Stik-at-Tamr (the 
Gate of the Date Market), which must have opened 
at no great distance from the B&b-al-Gharabah. 
The Date Market Gatehouse was a high-built 
structure which gave access to a palace within the 
precincts, called the DSr-al-Kutunlyah (the Palace 
of the Cotton Market), and this building also over- 
looked the Needle-makers' Wharf. Y4kdt states 
that in his day this gate and the adjacent palace 
were both closed, the gateway having been walled 
up in the early part of the reign of the Caliph 
N&sir, that is to say shortly after the year 575 
(a.d. 1 180). 

Within the precinct wall, near the Gharabah Gate, 
were two palaces called the D&r Khitftn and the 

1 Ibn Serapion, 22 ; Nuzhat, 147 ; Yakut, ii. 255. 



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266 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Dar-as-Sayyidah (both names signifying the Palace 
of the Princess), which had belonged to the daughter 
of the Caliph Muktadi, who reigned from 467 to 487 
(a. d. 1075 to 1094); but both these palaces were 
demolished when the D&r-ar-Rayh&ntyin, which will 
be mentioned presently, came to be built. Adjacent 
to the Date Market Gateway was the palace of the 
same name, which lay within the precincts but over- 
looking the Wharf of the Needle-makers outside, 
and in front of this were terraces occupied by the 
sellers of dried fruits. These merchants more espe- 
cially had their shops in that part of the town which 
lay immediately to the north of the Palaces, where the 
roads passing through these quarters converged on 
the northern gate of the city wall (as will be more 
particularly described in the next chapter), the main 
thoroughfare being that of the Tuesday Market, 
leading to the Gate of the Sultan 1 . 

Within the precincts, and, as seems probable, 
immediately south of the Gharabah Gate (occupying 
some of the area formerly covered by the older 
Hasan! Palace, for one of its walls was washed by 
the Tigris stream), stood the great College of the 
Mustan§irlyah. Of this college the ruins still exist, 
while of the adjoining Palaces of the Caliphs hardly 
a trace remains; but unfortunately, as die college 
was only completed in 631 (a.d. 1234), no mention 
of it occurs in YSkflt, who had finished his great 
geographical dictionary shortly before this date, and 
therefore we do not know for certain on what 
grounds of the older precincts the college was 
actually built. Mustan§ir was the penultimate 
Caliph of the house of 'Abbds and the father of 

1 Yakut, ii. 255, 519, 520; iii. 783 ; Marasid, i. 383 ; v. 408. 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 267 

Musta'sim, whom HfilAgti put to death, and this 
Madrasah of the Mustansirlyah was founded by him 
with a view to supplant and eclipse the celebrated 
Niz&mlyah College (to be described in chapter xxi), 
which Nizfim-al-Mulk had built nearly two centuries 
before. 

We are told that in outward appearance, in state- 
liness of ornament and sumptuousness of furniture, 
in spaciousness and in the wealth of its pious 
foundations, the Mustansirlyah surpassed every- 
thing that had previously been seen in Islam. It 
contained four separate law-schools, one for each 
of the orthodox sects of the Sunnls, with a professor 
at the head of each, who had seventy-five students 
(Fakih) in his charge, to whom he gave instruc- 
tion gratis. The four professors each received a 
monthly salary, and to each of the three hundred 
students one gold dlndr a month was assigned. 
The great kitchen of the college further provided 
daily rations of bread and meat to all the inmates. 
According to Ibn-al-Fur&t there was a library (Dfir- 
al-Kutub) in the Mustansirlyah with rare books 
treating of the various sciences, so arranged that the 
students could easily consult them, and those who 
wished could copy these manuscripts, pens and 
paper being supplied by the establishment. Lamps 
for the students and a due provision of olive oil 
for lighting up the college are also mentioned, 
likewise, storage places for cooling the drinking- 
water ; and in the great entrance hall {Ayw&ri) stood 
a clock (Sanddk-aS'Sd'dt, 'Chest of the Hours/ doubt- 
less some form of clepsydra), announcing the 
appointed times of prayer, and marking the lapse 
of the hours by day and by night 



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268 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Inside the college a bath house (ftamm&m) was 
erected for the special use of the students, and a 
hospital (Btm£rist&n), to which a physician was 
appointed, whose duty it was to visit the place every 
morning, prescribing for those who were sick ; and 
there were great store-chambers in the Madrasah 
provided with all requisites of food, drink, and 
medicines. The Caliph Mustansir himself took such 
interest in the work of the institution that he would 
hardly let a day pass without a visit of inspection ; 
and he had caused a private garden to be laid out, 
with a belvedere (Manzarah) overlooking the college, 
whither it was his wont to come and divert himself, 
sitting at a window — before which a veil was hung 
— and which opened upon one of the college halls, 
so that through this window he could watch all that 
went on within the building, and even hear the 
lectures of the professors and the disputations of 
the students. 

A century after its foundation, Ibn Batfitah, who 
visited Baghdad in 727 (a.d. 1327), dilates on the 
magnificence of the Mustansirlyah College, which 
had fortunately escaped destruction during the 
Mongol siege ; and he describes it as situated at 
the further end of the Tuesday Market (Suk-ath- 
Thalfithah), which was the commercial centre of 
Baghdad in his days. The law-schools in the 
Mustansirlyah were then still frequented by students 
of the four orthodox Sunnl sects, each sect or law- 
school having its separate mosque, and in the hall 
the professor of law gave his lectures, whom Ibn 
Batfitah describes as ' seated under a small wooden 
cupola on a chair covered by a carpet, speaking with 
much sedateness and gravity of mien, he being 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 269 

clothed in black and wearing a turban; and there 
were besides two assistants, one on either hand, 
who repeated in a loud voice the dictation of the 
teacher/ 

The Persian geographer Hamd-Allah, writing 
a dozen years later than Ibn Batfttah, also refers 
to the Mustansirtyah Madrasah as the most beautiful 
building then existing in Baghdad ; and it appears 
to have stood intact for many centuries, for the 
ruins of the college, as already mentioned, still 
exist, occupying a considerable space of ground 
immediately below the eastern end of the present 
Bridge of Boats. Mustansir likewise restored the 
great mosque of the palace (Jfimf-al-Kasr), originally 
built by the Caliph 'Alt Muktafl (see p. 252), and 
Mustansir set up four platforms (Dikkah) on the 
right or western side of the pulpit, where the 
students of the Mustansirtyah were seated and held 
disputations on Fridays after the public prayers. 
The remains of this mosque also exist, at the 
present day occupying part of the Sfik-al-Ghazl (the 
Thread Market), at some little distance to the east- 
ward of the ruins of the Madrasah. When Niebuhr 
visited Baghdad in 1750 he found that the ancient 
kitchen of the Mustansirtyah College was clearly to 
be recognized, being used in his day as a weighing- 
house; and Niebuhr copied here the inscription which 
gives . the name and titles of the Caliph Mustansir, 
with the statement that this Madrasah had been 
completed in the year 630 (a.d. 1233). A similar 
inscription (also extant) was seen by Niebuhr in 
the ruined mosque, with the date of 633 (a.d. 1236), 
doubtless when the restoration by Mustansir was 
finished, for, as already said, the foundation walls in 



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270 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

all probability are far older than this date, and belong 
to the great mosque of the Palace of the Caliph \ 

The third gate in the palace wall, which opened 
at no great distance to the eastward beyond the 
two gates of the Willow Tree and of the Date 
Market, was called the B&b-al-Badrtyah or the Bab 
Badr, from the Market of Badr that lay immediately 
outside, where had stood the Palace of Badr, the 
favourite and all-powerful minister of the Caliph 
Mu'tadid. This Badr had originally been a slave 
of the Caliph Mutawakkil, who had given him his 
freedom, and Badr rapidly rose to the command of 
the armies under Mu'tadid, during whose Caliphate 
Badr came to be considered as the chief man of 
the state, and among other matters superintended 
the restoration of the Mosque of Mansfir in Western 
Baghdad, as related in chapter iii. He fell a 
victim, however, to the jealousy of 'All Muktaft, son 
and successor of Mu'tadid, and Badr was put to 
death in the year 289 (a.d. 902). The Bdb Badr 
had formerly been called, the B&b-al-Kh&ssah (the 
Privy Gate), but it had changed its name after the 
Palace of Badr came to be built 

YAkfit mentions that the Bfib Badr had been 
closed since the time of the riots during the reign 
of the Caliph Tli e — that is to say since the year 
367 (a.d. 978), when e Adud-ad-Dawlah the Buyid 
made himself master of Baghdad — but Y4kdt also 
asserts that the Caliph T4i e restored this gate, and 
that opposite to it had stood the Dfir-al-Ftl (the 
Elephant Palace), which the belvedere (Manzarah) 

1 Kazwini, 211; Abu-1-Fida, History, iv. 471; Abu-1-Faraj, 425, 
442; Ibn-al-Furat MS., folios 20 b, 21a; Ibn Batutah, ii. 108; 
Nuzhat, 148 ; Niebuhr, ii. 241 ; Jones, 312. 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 271 

of the gate overlooked. The Caliph Tii* afterwards 
demolished this Ddr-al-Fll and turned its site into 
a burial-ground ; this was at the close of the fourth 
century (the tenth a.d.), and from what Y£kilt 
writes it would seem that in his day, namely at the 
beginning of the seventh century (the thirteenth 
a.d.), the ancient Badriyah Gate and the Badr 
Palace had both disappeared 1 . Half a century 
before the time of Yiktit, however, the B&b Badr 
was in existence, and the traveller Ibn J ubayr passed 
through it to reach a court of the mosque, within 
the Palace of the Caliph, where he heard a notable 
sermon preached on the 15th day of the month 
§afar, 581 (May 18, 1 185) ; further, he mentions the 
belvedere or upper chamber overlooking this court, 
and states that the Caliph NAsir with his sons sat 
at the window of this belvedere to listen to the 
sermon. 

Immediately outside the wall of the palaces, and 
beginning at the Badr Gate, was the street known 
as the Market of the Perfumers (Stik-ar-RayJi&nfyln), 
which was overlooked by the palace of the same 
name (D4r-ar-Rayh4niytn) standing inside the Piarim 
wall 2 . The Market of the Perfumers led directly 

1 Yakut is certainly in error (i. 444) in stating that the Badr Gate 
was in the vicinity of the Bab-al-Maratib of the palace wall and of 
the city gate called Bab Kalwadha, since the first of these, and the 
nearer of the two to the Bab Badr, must have been at least a mile 
distant from it. Further, the author of the Mardsid is equally in error 
(i. 112) in describing the Bab Badr as having been built by the Caliph 
Tai', seeing that it took its name from the favourite minister of that 
Caliph's great-grandfather. 

* RayhAtiy which in Mesopotamia and the East generally meant 
the Basil plant, in Spanish- Arabic was especially used for the Myrtle ; 
and it has passed into modern Spanish, where Arrayan is the common 
name for myrtle, e. g. the Patio de los Array ants or ' Court of Myrtles ' 
in the Alhambra of Granada. 



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272 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

into the square before the great mosque of the 
palace (J&mi e -al-Kasr), which last, as has already been 
said, lay immediately within the precincts adjacent 
to the B&b Badr, or rather between it and the next 
gate called the Bib Ntibi. 

The Market of the Perfumers — where sweet-basil 
(RayhAn) and other flowers were sold — was at one 
time a place of considerable importance, and diverg- 
ing from it were many minor market streets. In 
one of these the weavers of palm baskets (As- 
Safatlyln) had their shops, twenty-four in number, 
with a caravanserai known as the Khin e Asim, and 
twenty-three other shops adjacent thereto. The 
perfume-distillers (Al-'Att&riytn) also had their 
market near here with forty-three shops, and close 
by were the sixteen workshops of the drawers 
of gold wire, while from this roadway led the Sfik- 
as-Sarf (the Market of the Money-changers), the 
whole forming a network of thoroughfares lying 
round the great square of the palace mosque, to 
the north of the Gate of Badr and the Nubian Gate 
(B&b NAbi). 

A considerable portion of the original Market of 
the Perfumers was thrown down during the altera- 
tions effected by the Caliph Mustazhir between the 
years 503 and 507 (a.d. 1109 to 1113), when he 
demolished the Dlr Khfitfin and the palace built 
by his sister near the Gharabah Gate, known as the 
D&r-as-Sayyidah, and having bought up part of 
the site of the Market of the Perfumers, he caused 
part of the street here to be removed. A large 
area was thus rendered available, and a new palace 
was built, which overlooking the remainder of the 
Perfumers Market, was known as the D&r-ar-Ray- 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 273 

hiniytn, taking its name from the adjacent market 
It formed a great quadrilateral building, surrounding 
a court which measured 600 ells (about 300 yards) 
square, the centre being occupied by a garden, and 
within the circuit of the new palace there were more 
than sixty halls (Hujrah). One of these was known 
by the Persian name of the Darg&h-i-Khltdn (the 
Lady's Palace); it stood in the part nearest to the 
Nubian Gate (which will be described presently), 
and this palace was afterwards inhabited by the 
Princess Fatimah, granddaughter of Milik Sh&h 
the Saljtik, and wife of the Caliph Muhammad 
Muktafl, whom she espoused in 534 (a.d. 1140). 
She is said to have been a learned princess, and 
appears to- have exercised some influence on the 
political complications of the time ; she died in this 
Dargdh-i-Khitfin in 542 (a.d. 1147) before her 
husband, and was buried by him in the tombs of 
the Caliphs at RusAfah. 

Half a century after the foundation of the great 
Palace of the Rayhinlytn, the Caliph Mustanjid, 
grandson of Mustazhir, in the year 557 (a.d. 1162) 
built the Manzarah (belvedere), which overhung the 
Market of the Perfumers close to the Bfib Badr; 
this probably being the belvedere mentioned in the 
year 581 by Ibn Jubayr, where he saw the Caliph 
Nfi§ir sitting in state to hear the sermon in the 
palace mosque, as has already been described. 
The later Caliphs appear to have spent much of 
their time in the Palace of the Rayh&ntytn ; and in 
the garden of the great court, at no great distance 
behind the belvedere, Musta'sim, the last of the 
Caliphs, built two Treasuries or Libraries for his 
books. These were still standing intact after the 



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S / 



274 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Mongol siege, for about the year 700 (a.d. 1300) 
the author of the Mardsid describes them, adding, 
however, that in his time the greater part of the 
adjacent palace was in ruin, and that die grounds 
had become a wilderness, where nothing grew, but 
the plants that had run wild of the former garden of 
the Caliph ! . 

In the palace wall to the east of the Bfib Badr 
were the two main gates of the precincts, called 
respectively the B&b-an-Nubi (the Nubian Gate) and 
the B&b-al-'Ammah (the Public Gate). The Nubian 
Gate was also called the B£b-al- e Atabah (the Gate of 
the Threshold), this being the name more especially 
for its inner portal, which, as the nominal threshold 
of the abode of the Caliph, was solemnly kissed by 
all ambassadors of foreign potentates who came 
to Baghdad. The 'threshold' was a block of 
white marble, like a column, laid across in front 
of the inner gateway. It was probably under this 
stone that the Caliph N£§ir caused the great cross 
of the Crusaders to be buried, which Saladin had 
sent him as a present. The cross, which is de- 
scribed as being of immense size, and as having 
been held in high honour by the Christians, fell into 
the hands of the Moslems, with much other booty, 
at the battle of Jiatttn in 583 (a.d. 1187), when 
Saladin overthrew the power of the Franks in 
Palestine. From the battlefield the cross had first 
been taken as a trophy to Damascus, whence in the 
year 585 (a.d. 1189) it was brought to Baghdad, 
where, says the chronicle, the Caliph ordered it ' to 

1 Yakut, i. 444 ; ii. 255, 519 ; iv. 665, 666 ; Marasid, i. 382 ; iii. 162 ; 
Mas'udi, viii. 114, 161, 218 ; Ibn Jubayr, 223 ; Ibn Khallikan, No. 703, 
p. 20. 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 275 

be buried under the threshold of the B&b-an-Nfibf, 
with a small part thereof projecting forth, this same 
being of brass, but gilt, which the people passing 
over would tread under foot, spitting thereon ; and 
thus it was done on the 16th of the month Rabf II 
of that year' (June, 1 189) \ 

The B&b-an-Ntibt at one period must have been 
used as the principal gateway of the Palaces, and 
more than half a century before the reign of the 
Caliph N&sir, at the time of the riots which broke 
out at Baghdad in the year 520 (a.d. 1126), when 
the Caliph Mustarshid was fighting against Sultan 
Mahmfid the Saljflk, the chronicle states that the 
Nubian Gate was the only one allowed to remain 
open in the palace precincts, all others having been 
blocked or locked up by the orders of the Caliph. 
The most frequently mentioned, however, of the 
gates of the palace was the B4b-al- f Ammah — 
meaning the Gate of the Commonalty, or the Public 
Gate — which was alsa known as the B&b 'Ammfi- 
rlyah. Its huge iron gates are said to have been 
brought to Baghdad by the Caliph Mu'tasim from 
the city of Amorjum in Asia Minor, which city he 
had stormed and burnt to the ground during his cele- 
brated campaign of the year 223 (a.d. 838) against 
the Byzantine Emperor Theophilus. The Bdb-al- 
'Ammah would appear to have been the original 
entrance to the grounds of the Hasan! Palace ; it is 
mentioned by Ibn Serapion, and the Canal of the 
Palaces entered by it, after passing the Gate of the 
Fief of Mushjlr (as described in chapter xvi), the site 

1 Abu Shamah, ii. 82, 139. This reference I owe to Professor Lane- 
Poole. Some curious details are given as to the earlier history of this 
great cross. 

T 2 



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276 Baghdad during the Caliphate [en. 

of which must have been afterwards taken up by 
the Perfumers' Market. 

Within the Harlm wall and occupying the space 
between the Nubian Gate and the Public Gate 
were suburbs inhabited by the lowest orders of the 
Baghdad populace, being closed off from the adjacent 
palace precincts by an inner wall, in which opened 
three chief gateways, besides posterns. These 
gates of the inner wall, as described by Y&ktlt at 
the beginning of the seventh century (the thirteenth 
a.d.), were first the B&b-ad-Duwwfimit (the Gate of 
Tops, such as children play with), next the B&b 
'Ulayy&n (which may mean the Hyaena Gate), and 
thirdly the B&b-al-Haram (the Gate of the Sanctuary). 

Returning to the Bdb-al-'Ammah, the wall of the 
precincts ran thence for about a mile, first south- 
east, and then south-west, before it reached the 
B&b-al-Mardtib near the river bank, and in this 
long stretch was only one opening, namely the 
Bdb-al-Bustdn (the Garden Gate). Outside the wall 
near this gate began the quarter known as the 
Mamdnlyah (which will be described in chapter 
xxi) ; and the Garden Gate was remarkable for 
its Manzarah (belvedere), which overlooked the 
Place of Sacrifice, where, on the 10th of the month 
Dhu-l-fjijjah, on the occasion of the greater festival 
which closed the pilgrim season, the victim was 
solemnly sacrificed. 

The lowest of the gates in the precinct wall, and 
probably opening near the T4j Palace, was the Blb- 
al-Mardtib (the Gate of Degrees), which is described 
as having been one of the finest and best built of 
those giving access to the Harlm. Yfikflt adds that 
in the old days its warder had always been a person 



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xix.] Palace Gates and adjoining Quarters 277 

of importance, and the Gate of Degrees stood at 
a distance of two bow-shots, or a couple of hundred 
yards, from the Tigris bank. Such were the gates 
in the palace wall surrounding the fjarim or Sanc- 
tuary, as described by YSkfit, who explains that 
though the royal precincts were chiefly occupied by 
the numerous Palaces of the Caliphs, various minor 
quarters were also included within the walls, these 
being inhabited by the personal attendants of the 
sovereign and many of the great officers of state. 
Access to the actual Palace of the Caliph, and his 
private parks and gardens, w r as only gained by 
passing an inner wall, which on the land side en- 
tirely surrounded the royal residence, and cut it off 
from all intrusion from the city quarters ; but egress 
from the palace gardens was kept free on the river 
side, where the Tigris for nearly a mile formed the 
boundary of the precincts \ 

From the description summarized in the preceding 
pages, it is evident that at the time when Y&kflt 
wrote both the Firdfis Palace and the tfasani had 
long since disappeared, having fallen to ruin probably 
before the beginning of the fifth century (the eleventh 
a.d.). The site of the FirdGs, immediately to the 
south of the Gate of the Tuesday Market of the old 
Mukharrim Quarter (mentioned by Ibn Serapion), 
probably lay some distance outside the wall of the 
palaces which Y&kfit has described. The ground 
where the fjasanf had formerly stood appears to 
have been occupied at the close of the fifth century 
(the eleventh a.d.) by the palaces which stood near 
the three Gates of the Willow Tree, of the Date 

1 Ibn Serapion, 22 ; Yakut, 1.451 ; ii. 255 ; Mushtarik, 130; Ibn-al- 
Athir, x. 449 ; Fakhri, 276. 



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278 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

Market, and of Badr, opening in the north wall of 
the precincts, where in later times the Mustan§iriyah 
College and the great Palace of the Rayh&nlyin 
came to be built 

To attempt any exact plan of the Palaces of the 
Caliphs is of course impossible, but from all that 
has come down to us it seems probable that the 
ancient minaret at the present day standing in 
the Thread Market (Sfik-al-Ghazl), at a considerable 
distance from the ruins of the Mustansirlyah College, 
and which bears an inscription of the Caliph Mus- 
tan§ir, was only restored, not built by him, being, 
as already said, a part of the great palace mosque 
erected by the Caliph 'All Muktafl. In the latter 
days of the Caliphate the area of the Flarim, or 
precincts, as described by Yiktit, would appear to 
have contained two chief palaces, one, the New T£j, 
which stood on the river bank rather above the 
site of the first Palace of the T&j (described by Ibn 
Serapion), and secondly, the Palace of the Rayhiniyin, 
lying at some distance from the Tigris and below 
the Mustansirlyah College. To the eastward stood 
the great palace mosque, at the north-east angle 
of the Hartm walls, and of this building the minaret 
in the Stik-al-Ghazl is now the sole remaining 
vestige. 



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CHAPTER XX 

THE QUARTERS NORTH OF THE PALACES 

The wall of East Baghdad and its four Gates. The Bab-as-Sultan 
and the Sultan's Market. Streets of the Tuesday Market. Quarters 
built by Muktadt after the Inundation. The Road of the two Arch- 
ways. The Street of the Canal. The Karah Ibn Razin and the 
Muktadfyah. Mukhtarah Quarter and the Bab Abraz. College of 
the Tajiyah and the Wardiyah Cemetery. The Bib Zafar and the 
Zafariyah Quarter. The Quarter of the Judge's Garden and other 
quarters called Karah. 

The modern city of Baghdad, on the east bank 
of the Tigris, is surrounded on three sides by an 
ancient wall, pierced by four gateways, one of these 
bearing an inscription set up there by the Caliph 
NAsir. During the reign of this Caliph Baghdad 
was visited by Ibn Jubayr, and the description he 
has left of the city wall, with four gates, makes it 
certain that the present wall is virtually identical 
with the one which Ibn Jubayr described in 581 
(a.d. i 185), three quarters of a century before the 
Mongol siege. 

This wall, according to the Persian historian 
Hamd-Allah, was first erected by the Caliph Mus- 
tazhir, and the chronicle of Ibn-al-Athir confirms 



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280 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the fact under the record of events of the year 488 
(a.d. 1095). Three-quarters of a century after this, 
the Caliph Mustadl repaired or rebuilt the wall, 
as recorded in a contemporary account written by 
the anonymous epitomist of Ibn Hawkal, and Ibn- 
al-Athir gives us the exact date of this restoration, 
namely the year 568 (a.d. i 173). The epitomist 
of Ibn Hawkal, after mentioning that in his own 
day the Nahr Mu'alli Quarter (which is the name 
both he and Y&kdt give to the suburbs round the 
palaces forming new Baghdad) was surrounded by 
this strong and high wall, states that outside the 
wall was a deep ditch connected with the Tigris 
above and below, and that water thus flowed round 
the whole city. The epitomist further adds that at 
this period the more ancient northern quarters of 
East Baghdad had already fallen totally to ruin, 
with the exception of the outlying suburb round 
the shrine of Abu Hanlfah and the great mosque 
at Rusifah (as described in chapter xiv), and that 
the only populous quarters in his day were those 
lying immediately outside and surrounding the 
Palaces of the Caliphs. 

A dozen years after this the traveller Ibn Jubayr, 
who visited Baghdad in 581 (a.d. 1185), describes 
with much minuteness the city as he found it, and 
as already said especially mentions the town wall 
with its four gates, which enclosed the suburbs that 
had grown up round the palaces during the preceding 
century. The four gates will be more fully noticed 
in the following pages when speaking of the several 
quarters to which they gave egress, but briefly to 
name them as described by Ibn Jubayr and by 
tfamd-Allah the Persian geographer, they were 



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xx.] The Quarters North of the Palaces 281 

these. In the north wall, (i) the Gate of the Sultan, 
now called the BSb-al-Mu'azzam ; in the east wall, 
(ii) first the Zafarlyah Gate, which the Persian 
author calls the Khur&s&n Gate, and which is now 
known as the B&b-al-Wusf&ni, and next (iii) the 
Halbah Gate, at the present day shut up and called 
the Gate of the Talisman, from the inscription of 
the Caliph Ndsir, already mentioned ; lastly, to the 
south, (iv) the Basaliyah Gate, referred to during 
the Mongol siege by the Persian writers as the 
Gate of Kalw4dh4, and which fiamd-Allah calls by 
the curious title of the Bdb-al-Khalaj, this at the 
present day being known as the Eastern Gate (B&b- 
ash-Sharkl) l . 

The description given by Hamd-Allah, writing in 
the year 740 (a.d. i 339) — three-quarters of a century, 
therefore, after the Mongol siege — exactly corre- 
sponds with what is found at the present day. The 
city wall, he says, was built of kiln-burnt bricks, 
the ditch outside being lined with these bricks 
likewise, and the wall extended in the form of a 
semicircle, measuring 18,000 paces round, going 
from the Tigris bank above the city to the river 



1 Nuzhat, 147, and Guzidah, under reign of the Caliph Mustazhir; 
Yakut, iv. 845, and Ibn Hawkal, 164, note e; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 172; 
xi. 360; Ibn Jubayr, 231 ; Jones, 31a On p. 309, Commander Jones 
in the matter of the age of the present walls, states his opinion that 
'in all probability [the Gate of the Talisman, rebuilt in 618 or a.d. 1221], 
is of later construction than may parts of the foundation of the wall, 
for they bear the impress of age, and exhibit, moreover, the open brick 
and mortar work peculiar to the older MasanneAs—a. name applied to 
substantial embankments of masonry, built principally as water de- 
fences, on which the fortifications are raised. The foundation of the 
Baghdad walls may therefore date from the third century of the 
Hejireh.' In point of fact, they date from the fifth century, equivalent 
to the eleventh century a.d. 



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282 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

again below the southern quarters 1 . The great 
Palace of the Buy ids, and of the Saljfik Sultans who 
succeeded to their power, as has already been shown 
in chapter xvii, lay to the north of the new city, 
covering part of the ground formerly occupied by 
the Shamm&siyah Quarter; and in front of this 
palace stood the great mosque called the J4mi'-as- 
Sultdn, from which a road went southward, entering 
the city by the single gate in the north wall called 
either the B41>Sflk-as-Sult£n (the Gate of the 
Sultans Market) or simply the B&b-as-Sultin (the 
Sultan's Gate). 

This gateway is frequently mentioned by the 
Persian historians in their accounts of the siege of 
Baghdad by the Mongols. At the present day the 
Bib-al-Mu'azzam occupies its site, being so called 
from the shrine of Abu Hanifah the Im&m, which 
lies some distance to the north of it, and standing in 
a position to the westward of the former Palaces of 
the Sultan. Immediately within the gate, and going 
down towards the Palaces of the Caliphs, was the 
market called Sdk-as-Sulj4n, at the lower end of 
which came a street named the Darb-al-Munlrah, in 
the immediate neighbourhood of the Mu'alli Canal. 
Another street also mentioned by the same authority 
(Y4ktit) as situated on this canal is the Darb-al- 
Ajurr (the Street of Kiln-burnt Bricks), and this in 
the early part of the seventh century (the thirteenth 
a.d.) was the centre of a populous quarter. A 
hundred years later, when Ibn Batfttah visited 
Baghdad in 727 (a.d. 1327), the main thoroughfare 

1 The printed text of the Nuzhat, p. 147, gives the number as 15,000 
Gams or paces; the London and the Paris MSS., however, all give 
18,000 G&ms, as also the lithographed text, p. 135. 



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xx.] The Quarters North of the Palaces 283 

across these markets had reverted to the older 
name of the Street of the Tuesday Market \ which, 
beginning within the northern gate in the city wall, 
came down to the wall of the Palaces of the Caliph, 
and next passing through the Market of the Per- 
fumers (Stik-ar-Rayk4ntyin), communicated with the 
square in front of the great mosque of the palace. 

The quarters surrounding the Palaces of the Caliph 
to the eastward, away from the Tigris bank, and to 
the southward towards the town of Kalwidhi down- 
stream, for the most part were included within the 
lines of the city wall, though there were suburbs 
beyond the B&b-az-Zafartyah to the north-east, as 
also beyond the B&b-al-Basaliyah to the south, other- 
wise called the Kalw4dh4 Gate. These eastern and 
southern quarters were the latest to be built in 
East Baghdad, and dated in the main from the reign 
of Muktadi, after whom one quarter — the Mukta- 
dlyah — was named. This Caliph was the con- 
temporary of Mdlik Shdh, the founder of the Mosque 
of the Sultan, already described in chapter xvii, and 
of his famous Wazir the Nizfim-al-Mulk, who built 
the College of the Nizimiyah, which stood on the 
southern side of the palaces ; and Muktadi was father 
of the Caliph Mustazhir, who built the city wall. 

The reign of Muktadi, therefore, which lasted 
from the year 467 to 487 (a.d. 1075 to 1094), and 
of his son, witnessed a considerable extension to the 
area of East Baghdad. The city had been to some 
extent left in ruins at the end of the previous reign 
of Klaim, when in the year 466 (a.d. 1074) the 
whole eastern district was laid under water through 

1 Yakut, i. 59 ; ii. 564; Ibn Jubayr, 231 ; Rashid-ad-Din, 283 ; Ibn 
Batutah, ii. 108. 



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284 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the bursting of the great Mu'izztyah Dyke of the 
Kflrij Canal. The Tigris at the time had been in 
flood, and further a strong wind from the desert 
had thrown back the waters, which, it is reported, 
rose so high as to reach even the roofs of the 
houses. The calamity was the more terrible from 
its having occurred in the darkness of the night, 
and an immense number of people perished by the 
sudden falling in of the walls which had been under- 
mined by the rising torrent. The new quarters 
planned by Muktadl replaced the ruins that had 
been thus caused by the floods, and extended round 
the older Mamftniyah suburb, which had adjoined 
the Palaces of the Caliphs to the south-east, being 
described by Y&kflt as curving down from the line 
of the Mu'alia Canal on the north-east, back to the 
Tigris bank on the south ; and, as already stated, 
these suburbs during the succeeding reign of Mus- 
tazhir were enclosed by the line of the new city 
wall. 

From the square of the palace mosque a thorough- 
fare running northward, parallel with the Mu'alld 
Canal, led past the ancient Abraz Gate (in the 
former wall of the Mukharrim Quarter) to the B&b- 
az-Zafariyah in the new city wall. This thorough- 
fare is known as the Road of the Two Archways 
(Shiri'-al-'Akdayn), namely the Archway of the Ar- 
tificer ( e Akd-al-Mu§tanf) and the Archway of the 
Armourers ('Akd-az-Zarr&dtn). Leaving the square 
of the great mosque of the palace (Rahbah jAmf- 
al-Kasr) at the north-east corner, the road, after 
a short distance, came first to the Archway of the 
Artificer, which is described by Y&fctit as being 
4 a great gate in the midst of the city/ and after 



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xx.] The Quarters North of the Palaces 285 

passing through it the highway bifurcated. To the 
right the road led down to the Mamflnlyah Quarter 
and the gate called the B4b-al-Azaj, which will be 
described in the next chapter, while to the left the 
main thoroughfare continued north, following the 
line of the Mu'all4 Canal. 

The Mu'alli Canal here ran in a conduit, partly 
underground, and to the right of it was the Road 
of the Canal (Darb-an-Nahr). The main thorough- 
fare, after skirting the canal for the distance of a 
bowshot (say somewhat less than a hundred yards), 
next reached the quarter called the Karih Ibn 
Razin, a place of considerable extent, since to cross 
it was ' a good horse gallop V by which a distance of 
about half a mile may be indicated. 

The Road of the Canal, already mentioned, also 
led into this quarter, through which passed the 

1 On several occasions Yakut makes use of the terms 'bowshot' 
and ' horse gallop 1 to mark short distances, but he nowhere explains 
what length these measures represented, and the dictionaries give 
no aid in the matter. A 'bowshot 1 or 'arrow flight' (ghalwah or 
ramyah-sahm) may approximately be estimated at somewhat less than 
a hundred yards, but the term was used vaguely and often meant any 
distance up to a quarter of a mile or even more. Thus Idrisi (p. 144) 
speaks of the Island of Rawdah, near Cairo, as being two miles long 
(which it is) and ' a bowshot ' across, it measuring in point of fact 
about 500 yards in breadth. Again, Ibn Jubayr (p. 50) describes 
the Sphinx as lying ' a bowshot ' distant from the Great Pyramid, and 
^he space which separates the two is at least 350 yards. Lastly, the 
Hellespont at Abydos is described as ' a bowshot ' across (Kitib-al- 
"Uyun, p. 26 ; Abu-1-Fida, p. 200), and the distance is, in reality, over 
three-quarters of a mile. A ' horse gallop ' (shawf-al-faras) may be 
estimated at about half an Arab mile or 1,000 yards. Thus Yakut 
(i. 263) in describing Alexandria speaks of the Pharos as standing 
opposite the harbour on the point of the island, which last lay out to 
sea ' a horse gallop ' distant from the mainland. The island is now 
joined to the coast by the silting up of the old harbour, but judging by 
the present maps, half a mile would be a fair estimate of the distance 
which formerly was covered by the sea. 



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286 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Street of the Nut Market (Darb-al-Lawztyah). To 
the north-west of the Karih of Ibn Razln stretched 
the Quarter of the Muktadlyah, already referred to, 
which was named after its founder the Caliph 
Muktadi, while beyond the Ibn Razin Quarter to 
the north stood the Archway of the Armourers, 
which could be closed by a gate. This was some- 
times called the New Archway, but it came to be 
known as the 'Akd-az-Zarridln, they being the 
smiths or armourers who forged coats of mail, and 
who lived near this part of the roadway. 

The word Kar&h, which occurs in connexion with 
the name of many different quarters in this part 
of the city, is explained by Ydkflt as signifying a 
garden in the Baghdad dialect ; with the lapse of 
time, however, these 'gardens' coming to be built 
over, the term Kar&h continued in use as the name 
of the new suburb. The Muktadlyah 1 Quarter, 
which as already mentioned lay on the north-western 
side of the &ar&h of Ibn Razln, is one of those 
which suffered most during the second of the great 
inundations of Baghdad, namely that of the year 
554 (a.d. i 159), on which occasion all the upper 
part of the city was for a time again laid under 
water ; and Y4kftt reports that little beyond mounds 
of mud covering the ruins of former buildings 
remained visible, after the river had subsided, to 
mark the position of the various submerged quarters, 

1 The name Muktadfyah is by mistake printed Muktad/rfyah in 
Yakut, i. 774, and the Marasid, i. 185 ; the right reading, however, 
is given both in a note to this last as an alternative reading, and in 
(he text of Yakut, iv. 45. From the chronicle of Ibn-al-Athir, x. 156, 
there can be no doubt that Muktadt, who died in A. H. 487— and not 
Muktadir who was killed in a.h. 320— was the Caliph who built this 
Quarter. 



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xx.] The Quarters North of the Palaces 287 

which extended all the way from the Muktadtyah 
down past the Mamflniyah Quarter, and to the Azaj 
Gate to the south-east of the palaces. 

Beyond the second of the two archways, that of 
the Armourers, described above, the thoroughfare 
again bifurcated; the road to the right (turning 
eastward) led to the quarter called the Karih-al- 
Kidi (the Garden of the Judge), while to the left 
the main thoroughfare continuing northward first 
traversed the Mukhtirah Quarter, and then came 
to the old gate, formerly opening in the wall of 
the Mukharrim Quarter, called the Bib Abraz \ At 
the beginning of the seventh century (the thirteenth 
a.d.), when Yiktit wrote, the gateway of the Bib 
Abraz — which name he gives under the corrupt 
form of Biyabraz or Bayraz — had long been in ruin, 
and the cemetery called the Wardfyah then lay 
beyond it. The Bib Abraz is first mentioned by 
Ibn Serapion, in the early part of the fourth century 
(the tenth a.d.), and, as will be remembered, it was 
then the limit of the three northern quarters of 
East Baghdad to the south-east, opening in the wall 
of the Mukharrim Quarter, where the Mu'alli Canal 
entered the city. Yikflt also gives this gateway 
the name of the Bib Bin, derived evidently from the 
canal called the Nahr Bin, from which the Mu'alli 
Canal (through the Nahr Mflsi) originally took its 
waters 2 . 

Near the Bib Abraz, during Saljflk times, namely 

1 Ibn-al-Athir, x. 62, 156; xi. 164;. Yakut, i. 807; ii. 564; iv. 45, 
46, 440 ; Marasid, iii. 252. 

* Unless the Musi Canal, from the Nahrawan, had become silted 
up by the thirteenth century A.D., Yakut (iv. 845) must be mistaken 
in saying that the waters of the Mualla Canal are derived from the 
Khalis. 



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288 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

about the year 482 (a.d. 1089), stood the college 
called the Madrasah-at-Tijlyah, built by T&j-al- 
Mulk, chancellor of Sultan Malik Sh&h, and during 
this period the cemetery of the BAb Abraz was 
used as the burial-place of many persons of note. 
This cemetery, otherwise known as the Wardlyah, 
extended beyond the Abraz Gate, to the left of the 
roadway, and the thoroughfare thence passed directly 
to the gate of the town wall called the B&b Zafa- 
riyah. Round this gateway lay the Zafarlyah Quarter, 
which took its name from the Kar4h or Garden 
of Zafar, lying outside the quarter, its original owner 
Zafar 1 having been one of the chief servants of 
the Caliph, though of which Caliph, or when Zafar 
flourished, is not stated. From the details given 
of its position there can be little doubt that the 
Bib Zafarlyah of Ibn Jubayr and Y&kflt — which 
Hamd-Allah a century after the Mongol invasion 
names the B&b Khur&sdn (and some MSS. give it 
as the Gate of the Khurisin Road) — is identical 
in position with the modern B4b-al-Wus$&nl, which, 
as already stated, is the north-east gate in the 
present city wall, through which passes the high- 
road to Persia and Khurisin. 

Returning once again within the city limits, it will 
be remembered that the thoroughfare after passing 
through the Archway of the Armourers bifurcated, 
and the main road to the left has just been described. 
The branch to the right led eastward from the 
Armourers' Gate for the distance of an arrow flight 

1 In the printed text of Ibn Jubayr, p. 231, line 8, the name of this 
gate is spelt Bab-as-Safariyah (with an initial S&d, in place of Za), 
but there can be little question that Zafarfyah is the right reading, as 
given in Yakut and Ibn-al-Athir in the passages quoted below. 



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xx.] The Quarters North of the Palaces 289 

(or about one hundred yards), reaching a point 
where the road again bifurcated. To the left, east- 
ward, it led straight to the quarter called the Kar&h- 
al-I£4dl (the Judge's Garden), while to the right 
and south of this the branch road gave access first 
to the place called the I£arfih of Abu-sh-Shahm, 
and next to the quarter known as Al-If ubaybit (the 
little Domes). Of the founders of these various 
suburbs nothing is known, but Y&ktit adds that the 
four quarters called after the Kar&hs, or Gardens, 
of Ibn Razin, Zafar, Al-K&di (the Judge), and 
Abu-sh-Shahm, were each in his day standing apart 
like so many separate hamlets ; also they were well 
built, populous, and spacious quarters, each having 
its own mosque and market streets 1 . 

1 Ibn Serapion, 22 ; Yakut, iii. 587 ; iv. 45, 845, 920 ; Marasid, ii. 
388, 393 ; Hi. 252 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 120; Nuzhat, 147. 



U 



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CHAPTER XXI 



THE QUARTERS EAST AND SOUTH OF THE PALACES 

The Mamuniyah Quarter. The Halbah Gate and its Inscription. 
The Persian Fief and the Burj-al-'Ajami. The Kajf ah Quarter and 
the Rayyan. The Bib Basaliyah or Gate of Kalwadha. The town- 
ship of Kalwadha. Palace of the Kalwadha Rakkah. The Azaj 
Gate. Karah Juhayr, the Zandaward Monastery: the Maydan and 
Mas'udah Quarters. The eastern Kurayyah and the Nizamfyah 
College. The Bahaiyah and the Tutushi Hospital The later 
Tuesday Market. 

The quarters just described lay immediately within 
the city wall, between the Zafariyah and the Halbah 
Gates, and to the east of the thoroughfare known 
as the Street of the Two Archways, which was 
the left-hand branch at the first bifurcation outside 
the Archway of the Artificer. The right-hand 
branch at this bifurcation led south through the 
Mamflnlyah Quarter to the gateway within the city, 
known as the Bib-al-Azaj, and thence to the B&b- 
al-Basallyah, which opened in the lowest part of 
the city wall beyond the Basaliyah Quarter. 

The Mamtinlyah Quarter, as already stated in 
chapter xviii, owed its name to the Caliph Mamtih, 
whose attendants had built their houses here on 
lands adjacent to the palace afterwards called the 



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Quarters East and South of Palaces 291 

Kasr Hasant. In general terms the Mamtiniyah 
Quarter may be described as including the whole 
of the space between the wall of the Palaces of the 
Caliph near the original Kasr-al-Hasanl, and the 
gate in the city wall called the B&b Halbah, and 
it extended down to the Azaj Gate within the city 
on the south, while on the north it was bounded 
by the various Kar£hs to the east of the highroad 
of the two archways. The MamOnlyah included 
many minor quarters, and all these are said to 
have suffered considerable damage during the great 
inundation of the year 554 (a.d. i 159) ; the Mamtln- 
lyah, however, must have been subsequently rebuilt, 
for in the middle of the next century, HfllAgfl, on 
entering Baghdad after the great siege, took up 
his abode here, prior to visiting the Palaces of the 
Caliphs. 

At the end of the main street crossing the Mamtln- 
lyah was the B&b Halbah, the gate in the city wall 
described by Ibn Jubayr in 581 (a.d. 1185), and 
which is also frequently mentioned in the accounts 
of the Mongol siege. This gate was the next, on 
the south, to the B&b Zafar, and it is the present 
B4b-at-Talism, or the Talismanic Gate, which still 
bears the inscription set up here by the Caliph 
N&sir, referred to above. This inscription states 
that the gate which it adorns was built and restored 
by 'the Im&m Abu-l-'Abb&s Ahmad An-N&sir-li- 
Din-Allah, .... and the termination of the work 
was in the year 618/ that is to say a.d. 122 i. 
It is said that this gateway was in former times 
known as the White Gate, and it is at the 
present day walled up, having been closed since 
A. d. 1638, when Sultan Mur&d IV, the Turkish 

u 2 



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292 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

conqueror of Baghdad, entered in triumph through 
its portals \ 

Near the Halbah Gate was the belvedere called 
the Manzarat-al- Halbah, which is described as stand- 
ing at the further end of the market which traversed 
the Mamtlntyah Quarter. The word Halbah signi- 
fies 'a racecourse' or 'hippodrome/ and outside 
this gate, before the city wall had been built, was 
the place commonly used for playing the game of 
Sulj4n or polo. When the Saljftk Sultan M&lik 
Sh4h visited Baghdad in the year 479 (a.d. 1086), 
the chronicle mentions that he rode from his palace 
of the D&r-al-Mamlakat to this part of the town, 
and played polo here in the early part of the day on 
which he made his state visit to the Caliph Muktadt. 

Not far from the Halbah Gate, and to the south- 
east, was the Katfat-al-'Ajam (the Persian Fief), 
near which was the great bastion in the wall, so 
often mentioned during the Mongol siege under 
the name of the Burj-al-'Ajamt (the Persian Tower). 
It was against this point that Htil&gft directed the 
storming party to make their main attack, and 
Baghdad fell when the 'Ajaml Tower had been 
taken. Although apparently the name has now 
gone out of all memory, there can be no doubt that 
the ancient Burj-al- c Ajami is the present great corner 
bastion at the eastern angle of the city wall, now 
known as the Angle Bastion (T4biyah-az-Zawiyah). 
In the accounts of the siege the Persian Tower 
is described as lying between the Halbah and the 
Kalw&dha Gates, and the Katfat-al-'Ajami (the 

1 Niebuhr, ii. 240; Rawlinson, EncycL Brit., s.v. Baghdad; Ker 
Porter, ii. 263 ; Jones, 309. Tavernier (i. 239), who was in Baghdad 
in 1652, names it 'la Porte MureV 



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xxi.] Quarters East and South of Palaces 293 

Persian Fief) would thus have occupied the space 
within this angle of the city wall. The Persian Fief 
gave its name to the Katfah Quarter, which was 
one of those built by the Caliph Muktadi ; and in 
the seventh century (the thirteenth a.d.) it is 
described by Y&ktit as being a suburb that was 
like a separate hamlet, while contiguous to it and 
towards the Mamftntyah lay another quarter called 
the Rayyin, which the same authority mentions as 
one of the most populous to be seen in his day 
in East Baghdad. 

In the account of the city wall given by Ibn 
Jubayr in 581 (a.d. 1185), ^ e S^ te which opened 
to the south near the Tigris bank is called the 
B4b-al-Ba§altyah, and the Ba$aliyah Quarter is one 
of those mentioned in Y£kftt as having been 'built 
by the Caliph Muktadi in this part of the city. The 
name of the B&b-al-Ba$aliyah, it is true, does not 
occur in either Yikftt or in the Persian accounts of 
the Mongol siege; but the KalwddhA Gate, which 
Y&kflt expressly states lay contiguous to the Basa- 
Hyah Quarter, is frequently referred to, and since 
no B&b KalwAdhA is mentioned by Ibn Jubayr, it 
may be safely assumed that his Basallyah Gate, 
opening in the direction of the Kalw&dhd township, 
is identical with the gate afterwards known as the 
Bdb Kalw&dhi. One of the Mongol generals had 
his headquarters before the Kalw&dhd Gate during 
the great siege, and it was here, after Baghdad had 
fallen, that Musta'sim, the last of the Abbasid 
Caliphs, was brought out and made to stand as a 
suppliant in the presence of Htil&gti, in whose camp 
not far from this gate the Caliph subsequently met 
his death. 



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294 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

This Basallyah or Kalw£dh4 Gate is evidently 
the one which Hamd- Allah, writing in the middle 
of the eighth century (the fourteenth a. d.) and 
eighty years after the Mongol siege, calls the B&b- 
al-Khuluj, which may mean the Gate of the Canals 
(plural of Khali]), but the reading is uncertain, and 
the name unfortunately does not appear to be 
mentioned by any other authority \ At the present 
day this gate is known as the B4b-ash-Sharki (the 
Eastern Gate), but in the last century, when Niebuhr 
in 1750 visited Baghdad, it was known, he reports, 
under the Turkish name of the Karolog I£api, 
probably a corruption of Kar&nlik-Kapi, meaning 
the Gate of Darkness 2 , but this name also has 
apparently now fallen out of use. The name of 
the B4b Kalw&dhi frequently occurs in the chronicle 
of Ibn-al-Athir. During the troubles of the year 
535 ( A - D - II 4 I )» ^ e Caliph Muhammad Muktafl 



1 The printed text of the Nuzhat, p. 147, also the lithographed 
edition, p. 135, both give Bdb Khalaj, without vowels, and omitting 
the article. The MSS. of the British Museum give the readings 
Bdb-al-Khalah and Bdb-al-Khala (the last with *ayn in place of final 
jlm) ; the Paris MSS. give Bdb-al- Khalaj, or al-Halaj, or al-Khalafu 
The reading Khuluj (in the plural) is only tentative, because this at 
any rate gives a meaning, but it is to be noted that Khaitj, though the 
common word for a canal in Egypt and the west, does not appear to 
be commonly used in this sense in Mesopotamia, where the term 
Nahr is always employed both for a river and a canal. Possibly, if 
the true reading be Khalaj, the appellation may be taken from the 
well-known Turk tribe of that name, whom Istakhri (p. 245) has 
described, and who at a later time (a.d. 1290 to 1320), under the name 
of the Khiljt Sultans, became the second Muslim dynasty of India 
who ruled at Dehli. It must be noted, however, that there is no 
historical evidence connecting the Khalaj Turks with any gate of 
Baghdad. 

9 I owe this explanation to Professor E. G. Browne. Tavernier 
(i. 239) speaks of it in 1652 as the ' Cara Capi, la porte noire/ which 
confirms the above etymology. 



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xxi.] Quarters East and South of Palaces 295 

caused both this and the Zafarlyah Gate to be 
temporarily blocked up; and in the account of the 
inundation of the year 604 (a.d. 1208), it is stated 
that the suburb round this gate came to be much 
imperilled by the overflow of the ditch outside the 
city wall, on which occasion the Caliph N&sir caused 
the mouth of the said ditch on the Tigris to be 
closed by a temporary dam, which should prevent 
the influx of the river water. 

KalwAdhA, it will be remembered, was an im- 
portant township on the eastern Tigris bank, about 
a league below Baghdad, the site of which is oc- 
cupied by the modern village of Gerirah. Ibn 
Hawkal, as early as the year 367 (a.d. 978), relates 
that though Kalw£dh4 had a Friday mosque of its 
own, and was therefore to be considered as a 
separate township, it might almost be counted as 
forming part of Baghdad, for in his day the houses 
were continuous along the river bank from below 
the Palaces of the Caliph to Kalwidhi. Near where 
the Kalwddhi Gate came to be built in later days, 
there had stood a Kiosk belonging to the pleasure- 
loving Caliph Amln, outside which, in the year 198 
(a.d. 814), was encamped one part of the army 
then besieging Baghdad in the name of the Caliph 
Mamftn. At the date in question the later Palaces 
of the Caliphs (in East Baghdad) were represented 
by the single palace of the Kasr Ja'farl only, begun 
by Ja'far the Barmecide in the reign of H4rtin-ar- 
Rashld, and Amln had later on built himself this 
pleasure-house in the adjacent Rakkah or swamp 
of Kalw&dhA. This place came to be known as 
the Kasr Rakkah Kalwidha, and it was to reach 
his new Kiosk from the west bank that Amln 



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296 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

laid down the Zandaward Bridge of Boats which has 
been mentioned in chapter xiii l . 

Ibn Jubayr, in the year 580 (a.d. 1184), after 
describing the town wall with its four gates, adds 
that besides these there were many other gates 
within the city, built for shutting off the various 
market streets and quarters. One of the chief of 
these inner gateways was the B&b-al-Azaj (the Gate 
of the Portico or Gallery), standing in the southern 
part of the Mamftniyah Quarter. Although the 
exact position of the Azaj Gate in relation to the 
Gate of Degrees in the palace wall and the Ba§a- 
liyah Gate of the town wall is not given, it must 
have stood within this last, and it gave its name 
to the surrounding quarter. The B4b-al-Azaj is 
frequently mentioned by both Y&ktit and Ibn-al- 
Athlr in connexion with the Nizimlyah College, the 
Tutushl Hospital, and the various suburbs adjacent 
to the Mamftnlyah, namely the Quarter of the Persian 
Fief, the Mayd&n, the two Mas'ftdah Quarters, the 
Rayyin, and the Dayr-az-Zandaward. The Quarter 
of the B&b-al-Azaj was on three occasions partly 
burnt down, namely in the years 440, 467, and 551 
(a.d. 1048, 1075, and 1156), and the fire in most 
cases extended to the neighbouring Mamflntyah 
Suburb. 

Near the B&b-al-Azaj lay the 4 garden ' or quarter 
known as the Kar&lj Juhayr, and also in this neigh- 
bourhood stood the old convent called the Dayr-az- 
Zandaward, this Zandaward having been originally 

1 Yakut, i. 655, 807 ; ii. 884 ; iv. 142, 665 5 Marasid, i. 314 ; iii. 33 ; 
Rashid-ad-Din, 282, 298, 300; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 103, 156; xi. 51 ; xii. 
184; Abu-1-Faraj, 474> 475; Ibn Hawkal, 165; Tabari, iii. 868, 951 ; 
Jones, 31a 



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xxi.] Quarters East and South of Palaces 297 

a canal of the Kalw&dhd district, which also gave 
its name to the Bridge of Boats mentioned in a 
preceding paragraph. The convent has already 
been referred to in chapter xv, and its gardens 
were celebrated in the time of Yiktit for the oranges 
and grapes grown here, the latter being reported 
to have been the finest of all the districts round 
Baghdad. The Maydfin Quarter, which gave its 
name to one of the neighbouring Palaces of the 
Caliph in the Flarlm called the Kasr Mayd&n Kh41i§, 
lay close to the Azaj Gate ; the quarter may have 
received its name from the Maydfin or square 
originally laid out near this by the Caliph Mamtin 
when he rebuilt the Palace of the tfasani, as de- 
scribed in chapter xviii, but nothing else is recorded 
of it. In this same neighbourhood stood the two 
small Quarters both called Al-Mas'tidah, after a slave- 
girl of that name, who was of the household of the 
Caliph Mamtin. One of these Mas'tidah Quarters 
was within the Mamtintyah, while the other, through 
which passed the thoroughfare called the Darb-al- 
Mas'tid, stood on part of the endowed lands ( c Ak4r) 
belonging to the NizAmiyah College. Adjacent to 
this was the ]£urayyah Quarter of East Baghdad 
(the ]£urayyah of West Baghdad has been described 
in chapter vi), which is mentioned by Yiktit as 
lying near the Palaces of the Caliphs \ 

The celebrated College of the NizAmtyah was 
named after its founder Niz&m-al-Mulk — Waztr in 
turn of the two Saljfik princes Alp Arsl&n and M&lik 

1 Yakut, i. 233, 476, 826; H. 598, 665; iv. 122, 398, 528, 714; 
Marasid, i. 314, 431, 519; ii. 97, 393, 433; Ibn-al-Athir, ix. 376; x. 
67 ; xi. 143. Khatib, folio 107 b, for Zandaward gives Zandar&d> and 
the Paris MSS. confirm this reading, which Wiistenfeld also cites as 
an alternative from other MSS. of Yakut (v. 198). 



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298 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Sh&h, also the friend and patron of the astronomer- 
poet Omar Khayyim. The college was founded 
in 457 (a.d. 1065), and opened two years later, 
being especially established for the teaching of the 
Shfifi'ite school of law. Among its more celebrated 
lecturers was the great theologian GhazzAlt and 
Bahfi-ad-Din (better known with us as Bohadin the 
biographer of the Saladin), who was under-lecturer 
during four years in the Nizdmiyah. Close to the 
Nizdmiyah was another college called the Bahilyah, 
near which again stood the hospital called the 
Bimfiristan Tutushi, opening on the market called 
the Stil: Tutush, which went from the Niz&miyah 
to the Azaj Gate. This hospital and market were 
built by Khamfirtakin, who had originally been the 
slave of T£j-ad-Dawlah Tutush, one of the sons 
of the Saljtik Sultan Alp ArslAn, and he died in the 
year 508 (a.d. i i 14). A century later, in the time of 
Y&ktit, all these buildings were still in good repair, 
and from numerous incidental notices it seems clear 
that the Nizdmlyah College stood between the B&b- 
al-Azaj and the Tigris bank, not very far from the 
Basallyah Gate of the town wall, and on the road 
leading to this gateway from the Gate of Degrees 
in the wall round the Palaces of the Caliphs. 

The traveller Ibn Jubayr attended prayers in the 
Niz&mtyah on the first Friday after his arrival in 
Baghdad; this was in the year 581 (a.d. 1185), and 
he describes it as the most splendid of the thirty 
and odd colleges which then adorned the city of 
East Baghdad. Already in 504 (a.d. mo), and 
only a score of years after the death of Niz&m-al- 
Mulk, this college had been thoroughly repaired. 
Ibn Jubayr further reports that in his day the 



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xxi.] Quarters East and South of Palaces 299 

endowments derived from domains and rents be- 
longing to the college amply sufficed both to pay 
the stipends of professors and to keep the building 
in good order, besides supplying an extra fund for 
the sustenance of poor scholars. The Stik or market 
of the Niz&mtyah was one of the great thorough- 
fares of this quarter, and it is described as lying 
adjacent to the Mashra e ah or wharf, which proves 
that the college must have stood near the Tigris 
bank. Opposite to this, on the western bank of the 
river, in the Karkh Quarter lay the l£urayyah 
suburb of West Baghdad, which, as has already 
been pointed out, must not be confused with the 
other I£urayyah suburb adjacent to the Niz&mtyah. 

When Ibn Battitah visited Baghdad in 727 (a.d. 
1327), namely three-quarters of a century after the 
Mongol siege, the Nizdmiyah College was still 
standing and in good repair. He describes it as 
situated in the middle of the great market street 
of East Baghdad, then generally known as the 
Tuesday Market (Stik-ath-Thal&thah), near the upper 
end of which stood the Mustansirtyah College, as 
described in a preceding chapter. This long street 
must have followed a serpentine course round the 
ruined wall of the Palaces of the Caliphs, going up 
from the Kalwddhi Gate on the south, to the B&b- 
as-Sultfin on the north-west, where the original 
Tuesday Market had stood in the days of Ibn 
Serapion. Writing a dozen years later than Ibn 
Battyah, yamd-Allah, the Persian historian, briefly 
alludes to the Nizdmiyah, which he calls * the mother 
of the Madrasahs ' in Baghdad. This proves that 
down to the middle of the fourteenth century a.d. 
the college was still standing, though at the present 



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300 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

time all vestiges of it have disappeared, as indeed 
appears already to have been the case in the middle 
of the last century, for Niebuhr found no traces of 
the Nizdmlyah to describe in his painstaking account 
of the ruins in the city of Caliphs, as these still 
existed at the time of his visit *. 

1 Ibn Khallikan, No. 410, p. 112 ; No. 599, p. 1 14 ; No. 603, p. 119 ; 
No. 852, p. 131; Ibn Jubayr, 220, 231; Yakut, i. 826; iv. 85; Ibn 
Batutah, ii. 108 ; Nuzhat, 148 ; Ibn-al-Athir, x. 38. 



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CHAPTER XXII 

RECAPITULATION AND AUTHORITIES: EARLY PERIOD 

Five periods of Abbasid History. The First Period begins. Tabarf 
and the first siege of Baghdad. Growth of Western and of Eastern 
Baghdad. Civil war between Amin and Mamun. Baghdad besieged 
by Tahir and Harthamah. Death of AmSn; Mamun in Baghdad. 
Mu'tasim removes to Samarra. The Second Period begins. The 
second siege of Baghdad under Musta'in. City walls built. Baghdad 
again the Capital. Ya'kubt and Ibn Serapion. The first systematic 
description of the city. Mas'udi and his history called The Golden 
Meadows, 

I propose in these concluding chapters to sum up 
in chronological order the topographical information 
which has been set out in detail in the preceding 
pages, and the occasion may serve to name in turn 
the authors to whose writings we are indebted for 
the knowledge that has enabled us to reconstruct 
the plan of mediaeval Baghdad \ From its founda- 
tion by the Caliph Manstir to its capture by Htil&gti 
the Mongol, the history of the city is that of the 
Abbasid Caliphate, and the events accompanying its 
rise and fall will perhaps be better understood if the 
five centuries that elapsed during this long period 
be divided into five rather unequal parts, repre- 

1 References to authorities are, for the most part, now omitted, these 
having been fully given in the previous chapters. 



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302 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

senting, as it were, so many acts in the great drama 
of the history of Islam. 

These five divisions are : — (i) the period of the 
great Caliphs, from the foundation of the dynasty in 
132 (a.d. 750) to the death of Mamtin in 218 (a.d. 
833) ; (2) the period during the tyranny of the 
Turkish body-guard, ending in 334 (a.d. 946), when 
Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah the Buyid prince became master in 
Baghdad ; (3) the period of the Buyid supremacy ; 

(4) followed by the Saljtik supremacy, beginning 
with Tughril Beg, who entered Baghdad in 447 
(a.d. 1055), and ending with the death of Sultan 
Sanjdr, the last of the great Saljtiks in 552 (a. d. 1 1 57) ; 

(5) lastly, the period of decline and fall, which ended 
with the Mongol conquest, the sack of Baghdad in 
656 (a.d. 1258), and the death of the last Abbasid 
Caliph Musta'sim \ 

In so far as the history of Baghdad itself is 
concerned, the first period of course only starts with 
the date of the foundation of the Round City by the 
Caliph Manstir, namely about the year 145 (a.d. 762), 
closing with the death of Mamtin, as already said, 
or in other words, the period begins with the reign 
of the grandfather of Hfirtin-ar-Rashtd, and ends 
with the life of the second of his sons who attained 
the Caliphate. These seventy and odd years form 
the most brilliant epoch of Moslem history; the 
Caliphs were then great warriors and sovereigns, 
and the fact is significant that, with the sole excep- 
tion of Amin, no Caliph during this period died in 
Baghdad. Their tombs lie scattered over the length 
and breadth of the empire 2 — from the pilgrim road 

1 See the Chronological Table given before chapter i. 
8 See note l to p. 194. 



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xxii.] Recapitulation : Early Period 303 

near Mecca to TGs in Khur&s&n, or the gate of 
Tarsus in the north-west — for the burial-place of 
the Caliph was where he had died, on the road, so 
to speak, journeying in the affairs of Islam, 

For this first period we have unfortunately 
no written contemporary authorities, but for the 
topography of Baghdad an event of much impor- 
tance is the first siege of the capital in the year 198 
(a.d. 814), when (as will be remembered) Amin, 
son of H&rtin-ar-Rashld, defended himself during 
eighteen months against the generals of his brother 
Mamtin. The detailed narrative of this siege, taken 
down from the accounts of eye-witnesses and re- % 
duced to system, has been transmitted to us in the 
pages of the great chronicle of Tabari. In this 
the incidental mention of places attacked or defended 
during the siege operations enables us to fix the 
position of many points left vague in the two great 
systematic descriptions of Baghdad which belong 
to the following century, composed respectively by 
Ya'ktibl and Ibn Serapion, from whose writings, 
chiefly, the plan has been reconstructed. 

It will be remembered that Baghdad as founded 
by Manstir was a circular city or burg four miles 
in circumference, having four equidistant gates with 
a triple wall, which in concentric circles enclosed 
the great palace and mosque of the Caliph standing 
in the middle of the wide central area. Before 
the death of Manstir in 158 (a.d. 775), however, the 
city had already spread far beyond these modest 
limits. Suburbs had grown up along the highroads 
starting from each of the four gates, and these 
suburbs, together with East Baghdad or Rus&fah, 
founded at almost the same time as the Round 



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304 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

City, but on the other bank of the Tigris, covered 
ground measuring five miles across in length and in 
breadth. 

Thus, beginning at the Basrah or south-eastern 
gate of the Round City, one highroad went down- 
stream along the river bank, having the Sharfctyah 
Quarter on the one hand near the Tigris, and the 
great Karkh Quarter on the other side, inland ; and 
this last with its markets is described as stretching 
for nearly two leagues southward of Baghdad. The 
Karkh Quarter on the side furthest from the river 
was bordered by the highroad running south, which 
was the Pilgrim Way leading to Mecca. This was 
known as the Ktlfah Road (from the city of that 
name where the Euphrates was crossed), and this 
highway started from the bifurcation outside the 
Ktifah Gate at the south-western part of the Round 
City. Beyond the square at this gate two high- 
roads began, namely the Ktifah Road south, bor- 
dering Karkh as just described, and the Muhawwal 
Road west, passing through the town of Muhawwal 
on the c ts& Canal to the city of Anb&r on the 
Euphrates. From the Syrian Gate, in the north- 
western part of the Round City, a thoroughfare 
also went westward, called the Anb4r Road, which 
passing first through the Harbiyah suburb to the 
Anbir Gate, and there crossing the bridge over the 
Trench of Tihir, finally struck into the Muhawwal 
Road at a point beyond Muhawwal town, having 
thus far kept along the northern bank of the c lsA 
Canal. 

Beyond the suburb at the Kfifah Gate, and Jying 
westward of the Round City, were the various 
suburbs of the Muhawwal Gate on the highroad 



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xxn.] Recapitulation : Early Period 305 

to the town of that name ; while north of the Syrian 
Gate stretched the Harb Quarter or the tfarbiyah, 
occupying all the ground upstream above the Round 
City; beyond which, again, began the cemeteries 
afterwards known as the K&zimayn. Outside the 
north-eastern or Khur&s&n Gate of the Round 
City, the Caliph Manstir had built his palace, called 
the Khuld, lying to the right or south of the road 
leading to the Main Bridge of Boats across the 
Tigris ; and on the further side of the river stood 
the palace and suburb of Ru§£fah. This lay to the 
northward of the bridge end, and it had the Sham- 
mfislyah Quarter beyond it eastward, stretching from 
the river bank opposite the Harblyah Quarter to the 
gate of East Baghdad opening on the Persian high- 
road, which was called the Khur&s&n Gate of the 
Eastern City, while to the south of the Main Bridge 
lay the Mukharrim Quarter. 

During the reign of Mahd!, son and successor of 
Man§6r, Ru§&fah grew to rival West Baghdad in the 
extent and magnificence of its various palaces and 
market streets. Round the palace and mosque 
which Mahdt had built, his attendants and their 
followers received grants of lands, and just as the 
Round City had come to be encompassed by the 
suburbs in which stood the fiefs of the nobles 
belonging to the court of Manser, so Ru§ifah 
during the eleven years' reign of Mahdi became the 
centre of a town of palaces built by the next 
generation of courtiers. In the year 170 (a.d. 786), 
when the reign of H&rtin-ar-Rashtd began, the three 
eastern quarters of Rus&fah, the Shamm&siyah, and 
Mukharrim, formed nearly as great a city on the 
east side of the Tigris as did the city of Man§tir with 



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306 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

its suburbs on the west side. The Caliph still 
lived in the Khuld Palace, and nominally the Dlwdns 
or offices of government were in the Round City ; 
but his Waztr Ja'far the Barmecide had built himself 
a palace on the eastern Tigris bank below the 
Mukharrim Quarter (which palace subsequently 
formed the nucleus of the later palaces of the 
Caliphs), and much of the business of state was 
now transacted in Eastern Baghdad under the 
supervision of JaYar. 

The fall of the Barmecides shed a gloom over 
the later years of the reign of Hdrtin-ar-Rashld, 
and after the death of the great Caliph, the rivalry 
which had ever existed between his two sons — 
Amtn, whose mother was the Abbasid Princess 
Zubaydah, and Mamiin, the son of a Persian bond- 
woman — promptly flamed up into civil war. The 
Caliphate belonged by right of birth to Am!n, but 
H&rtin had named Mamtin next in the succession, 
and meanwhile had made him governor for life 
of Khur&s&n and the whole eastern half of the 
empire. On the death of his father Amln had 
succeeded peaceably to the throne, and at first 
remained inactive at Baghdad, but before long he 
precipitated the inevitable crisis by naming his own 
son Mtisd heir-apparent, thus attempting to deprive 
Mamtin of the succession. Mamftn promptly took 
up arms in defence of his rights, and causing his 
brother Amln to be solemnly deposed in all the 
mosques of Persia, Syria, and Arabia, where the 
governors were all partisans of Mamiin, his armies 
advanced through Persia on Lower Mesopotamia for 
the siege of Baghdad. 

Amln meanwhile having lost all power even in 



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xxii.] Recapitulation : Early Period 307 

'Ir&k, had shut himself up in the capital, and Mamun, 
who preferred to remain safely in far-off Khurfis£n, 
had given the command of the invading force to 
two of his generals, namely Harthamah, who was 
to attack Baghdad from the east, and T&hir (subse- 
quently founder of the Tfihirid dynasty of Khurfisfin), 
who, crossing the Tigris at Maddin (Ctesiphon) into 
Lower Mesopotamia, was to march up the great 
Kfifah road and thus invest the city from the 
western side. The accounts in Tabarl name the 
exact positions of the troops. Harthamah, on 
the eastern side, after defeating the army which 
Amln had sent to oppose him at Nahrawdn, estab- 
lished his headquarters on the hither side of the 
canal called the Nahr Bin, probably near the spot 
where the Palace of the Pleiades was afterwards 
built, and there fortified his camp with a wall and a 
ditch. His right wing was before the Shammdsiyah 
Gate on the river bank above the city, while his left 
wing occupied a pleasure palace lately built by Amin 
in the plain or Rakkah of Kalwidi below the city. 
At this date Eastern Baghdad had no town wall, but 
the townspeople built barricades to block the roads 
at their exit from the city, and from gate to gate the 
line of houses and garden walls served as the outer 
line of defence. 

On the western side Tihir established his head- 
quarters in the garden outside the Anb&r Gate, 
where the Anb&r Bridge crossed the Trench that 
went by his name, and he forthwith began his attack 
on the outlying suburbs of this side. The houses 
in the Harbiyah Quarter were in great part destroyed 
by his catapults (Manjanlk), and the ruin effected is 
described as extending from the Tigris bank at the 

x 2 



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308 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Baghtyln Quarter round past the Syrian Gate to the 
Ktifah Gate and the line of the $arit Canal. Fire 
completed the destruction begun by the catapults, 
the great mills at the junction of the two $ar&t Canals 
were in part destroyed, and all the suburbs from the 
Quarter of Fiumayd along the Karkh&yA Canal are 
stated to have been laid in ruins. The siege dragged 
on from month to month, and the inhabitants of the 
city meanwhile suffered horribly. The Princess 
Zubaydah, widow of H&rtin-ar-Rashid, was driven 
out of her palace in the fief near the Katrabbul 
Gate, and joined her son in the Round City, which, 
with the Khuld Palace and the suburbs to the south 
along the river bank, became the last refuge of Amln 
and the garrison. 

Little by little the line hemming them in was 
drawn tighter, and all attempts to break through 
failed. A great fight took place in the Kunisah 
Quarter, and the garrison attempted a sally in the 
neighbourhood of the Darb-al-Hijdrah (the Street 
of Rocks), beyond the Muhawwal Gate, on which 
occasion Tfihir came near to lose his life, but the 
besieged, after performing prodigies of valour, were 
again driven back. In order to facilitate the dispatch 
of reinforcements to and from the army under 
Harthamah on the eastern river bank, Tfihir had 
moored a new bridge of boats across the Tigris 
above Baghdad. He now ordered a general attack 
to be made by Harthamah on the east side, and here, 
when the Khurds&n Gate had been stormed, the 
besiegers soon gained possession of the whole of 
East Baghdad. The siege had begun before the end 
of the year 196 a.h., and it was in the beginning of 
198 that Harthamah having thus become master of 



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xxn.] Recapitulation : Early Period 309 

Rus&fah, the Shammfisfyah, and Mukharrim — the 
three quarters forming that half of the city which 
lay on the Persian side of the Tigris — proceeded to 
cut the Main Bridge of Boats, and thus isolate the 
Round City and its defenders. 

Meanwhile in Western Baghdad, when it was seen 
that the defence was failing, the merchants had begun 
to parley, and the troops of Amtn were ever deserting 
in increasing numbers, T^hir could now occupy the 
quarters on the southern side of the Round City, 
namely the Sharklyah, with Karkh and its great 
markets ; further, he had succeeded in destroying the 
two masonry bridges — the Old Bridge and the New 
— over the $ar£t Canal, by which the highroads 
from the Ktifah and Basrah Gates passed out 
into the suburbs. The unfortunate Caliph Amin 
now retired, with his mother Zubaydah, to the 
Palace of the Golden Gate in the Round City, 
egress to the Tigris being still preserved through 
the Khuld Palace and its gardens ; but here the 
river bank was already commanded by the catapults 
of Harthamah, whose troops had occupied the whole 
eastern side, and Tihir was closely investing the 
walls of the Round City. His lines, we are told, 
ran from the Tigris at the foot of the Khuld 
Gardens, up the $ar&t Canal past the Basrah Gate 
to the K&fah Gate, and thence turned north back 
to the river, after blocking the Syrian Gate, the 
Tigris bank being regained immediately above the 
Khuld Palace. 

The end could not long be delayed. The Khuld 
Palace on the river had to be deserted by its 
garrison, becoming untenable from the shower of 
stones shot by catapults which Harthamah had 



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3io Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

planted in the Mukharrim Quarter; whereupon Amin, 
with his mother and those few troops who still stood 
by him, retired within the ruined city of Manstir, 
shutting himself up in the Central Palace of the 
Golden Gate. Before long, this too becoming un- 
tenable, Amin, driven to surrender and fearing 
Harthamah less than T&hir, set out in secret, and 
embarked, to cross the river to the camp of the 
besiegers on the east side. By ill chance, or 
through treachery, the boat was overturned, and the 
luckless Amin, after swimming back to the western 
bank for shelter, was taken prisoner by the enemy's 
troops, and forthwith put to death in the garden 
near the Anb&r Gate by order of TAhir, that general 
sending the head of the deposed Caliph to Mamfln 
in Khur&s&n as a proof that the war was now really 
at an end *. 

The reign of M&mun, who some months after 
these events arrived in Baghdad, witnessed the 
rebuilding of the half-ruined capital. The Round 
City, however, would appear never to have recovered 
from the effects of the siege, and Mamtin, when 
resident in Baghdad, for the most part lived in the 
Barmecide Palace below the Mukharrim Quarter 
on the east bank, which (as described in chapter 
xviii), after having been greatly enlarged by the 
Wazlr Hasan Ibn Sahl, was subsequently known 
as the Hasani Palace. On the death of Mamtin 
and the accession of his brother Mu'tasim, the riots 
caused by the Turkish body-guard ultimately forced 
that Caliph to betake himself to S&marri, which 
now became the capital of the Caliphate. Here 
Mutasim, and after his death six Caliphs in turn, 
1 The details of the first siege will be found in Tabari, iii. 864 to 925. 



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xxii.] Recapitulation: Early Period 311 

reigned and built palaces, while successive captains 
of the guard controlled the affairs of the empire at 
their pleasure. This was the second period in the 
history of the Abbasids, namely that of the long 
tyranny of the Turkish guard, which only came 
to an end with the advent of the Buy id princes. 
While the Caliphs thus lived at Sdmarrd, Baghdad 
was under the rule of governors, for the most part 
T&hirids, for T£hir, after bringing Amtn to his 
death, had prudently retired from court to live as 
a semi-independent prince in Khur&s&n, and during 
this period, when the Caliphs were the puppets of 
the body-guard in SAmarrd, diverse members of his 
family in succession occupied the chief provincial 
governorships throughout the Abbasid dominions. 

The period of fifty-eight years, during which the 
Caliphate had its seat at SAmarr&, was interrupted 
in 251 (a. d. 865) by the episode of the flight to 
Baghdad of the Caliph Musta'ln, who made the 
attempt, unsuccessfully, thus to escape from the 
tyranny of the Turkish guard. Then followed the 
second siege of Baghdad, of about a year's duration, 
by an army dispatched from SimarrA in the name 
of a cousin, the rival Caliph Mu'tazz, whom the 
captain of the guard had set up in the place of 
Mustaln. During this second siege Baghdad was 
defended by Muhammad ibn 'Abd-Allah, a grand- 
son of Tihir who had besieged the city rather more 
than half a century before ; but it was Rus&fah or 
East Baghdad that now became the headquarters 
of the defence, not West Baghdad with the Round 
City, as had been the case in the time of Amin. 
For the details of this siege, also, we are indebted 
to the pages of Tabarl, who possibly himself 



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312 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

witnessed some of the incidents that he describes, 
since he must have been nearly thirty years of age 
at the date in question. 

As soon as Musta In had safely reached Rusifah, 
he ordered the governor, Muhammad the TAhirid, 
to block the roads coming in from S&marrA by 
cutting the dykes of the canals above Baghdad, and 
he next set to work to surround both the eastern 
city and the western with walls. As already said, 
the Caliph fixed his headquarters in Ru§4fah, and 
on the east side the new wall began at the Sham- 
m&slyah Gate on the Tigris bank above the Palace 
of Mahdt. Sweeping round through a quarter-circle, 
by the Barad&n Gate to the Khur&sin Gate at the 
exit of the highroad to Persia and the east, the 
wall thus enclosed the Ru§Afah and Shamm&styah 
Quarters ; then curving back through another quarter- 
circle, it included the Mukharrim Quarter and came 
to the Tigris again at the Gate of the Tuesday 
Market In West Baghdad the wall began above 
at the Gate of the Fief of Zubaydah, thus including 
the Upper Harbour, and passing to the Katrabbul 
Gate followed up the line of the Trench of TAhir, 
probably as far as the Anb4r Gate, for this and the 
BAb-al+Iadld (the Iron Gate) are especially mentioned 
during the siege operations. From the Trench the 
wall curved down in a great semicircle, enclosing 
the City of Man§flr and part of Karkh, until it 
joined the Tigris again beyond the Basrah Gate, 
below where the Sar£t Canal had its outflow at the 
Palace of tfumayd. The exact line followed by 
the wall between the upper part of the T&hirid 
Trench and the Palace of ftumayd is not given, 
but it probably followed the line of one of the 



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xxii.] Recapitulation : Early Period 313 

Karkh canals, and we are told that a ditch was dug 
outside the wall wheresoever no canal already existed. 
The total cost of these fortifications is reported to 
have amounted to 330,000 dinars or gold pieces, a 
sum equivalent to about ;£ 160,000. 

The main attack on the part of the besieging 
troops was from the north, being directed against the 
Shammdsiyah Gate on the east side, and opposite 
this on the west bank, against the Katrabbul Gate. 
Further Tabarl mentions that along the wall of the 
Fief of Zubaydah and the Trench the defenders 
greatly harassed their opponents by stones from the 
Manjanlks or catapults erected over various other 
gateways. After many months' blockade and several 
battles, a general assault was finally ordered by the 
Sdmarrd captains, and all down the line, from the 
Y&siriyah Quarter and the Anb&r Gate on the west, 
to the Khurisin Gate at the eastern extremity of 
the Shamm&slyah Quarter, a stubborn defence was 
made, until the Upper Bridge of Boats having been 
set on fire, the outer defences were at length carried. 
The end followed rapidly. Musta'in, being driven out 
of Ru?4fah, became a prisoner, and was forced to 
abdicate ; before long he met his death at the hands 
of his captors, and the Turkish guard thereupon 
returned victorious to their nominal sovereign 
Mutazz in SAmarri 1 . 

It has been pointed out that the ruin of Western 
Baghdad, and especially of the Round City, had 
resulted from the first siege in the time of Amln ; 
it may be added that the three northern quarters 
of East Baghdad (Ru§£fah, Shammdsiyah, and Mu- 

1 The details of the second siege are given in Tabari, iii. 1553 to 
1578. 



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314 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

kharrim) only in part ever recovered the effects of 
this second siege, which had resulted in the death 
of Mustain. The Turkish body-guard had for the 
time triumphed, but before another thirty years had 
elapsed events occurred which caused Simarri to 
be deserted by the Caliphs, and Mu'tadid (nephew 
of Mu'tazz), who succeeded To the throne in 279 
(a. d.J$92), permanently re-established the Caliphate 
in the older capital. Settling in East Baghdad, he 
laid the foundations of the great complex of palaces 
which stood on the Tigris bank below the Mu- 
kharrim Quarter, forming the Harlm or Precinct, 
which was afterwards known as the Dir-al-Khildfah 
(the Abode of the Caliphate). These Precincts 
ultimately became the nucleus of the later city, which 
in time developed from the line of suburbs that 
spread round the land side of the great palaces. 
This new town was walled in at a subsequent date, 
and at the present time still exists, on the east bank 
of the Tigris, as the modern city of Baghdad. 
m0m It is to the writers who flourished during the last 
quarter of the third century (the ninth a.d.), namely 
Yaktibt, Ibn Rustah, and Ibn Serapion, that we 
owe our first, and indeed our only systematic de- 
scriptions of Baghdad. Ya ktibl begins by the Round 
City as it was originally founded in the reign of 
Man§dr, and then passes on to a detailed account 
of its suburbs, concluding with a brief notice of the 
three eastern quarters of Ru§£fah, Shamm&styah, 
and Mukharrim. The description of the canals given 
by our next authority, Ibn Serapion, supplements 
Ya'ktibi, enabling us to plot out his topography, 
and Ibn Rustah adds some few additional details, 
but the critical examination of these three authorities 



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xxii.] Recapitulation : Early Period 315 

need not detain us now, since having formed the 
basis of matters discussed in earlier chapters of 
the present work, their accounts have already been 
fully reviewed. Points of detail are in many in- 
stances supplemented by incidental notices, under 
the various years, occurring in the volumes of the 
great chronicle of Tabarl already mentioned, and thus 
the earlier descriptions can be filled in and confirmed. 
A matter that must be noted in connexion with 
these and the following accounts of Baghdad, is 
the curiously arbitrary way in which the Arab geo- 
graphers for the most part speak of the position 
of the City of Man§dr in relation to the points of 
the compass, and to the system of canals and roads 
that surrounded it. They assumed that the Tigris 
held its course entirely from west to east, and hence 
lay to the north of the City of Man§Gr ; further, that 
the $arfit Canal (coming from the Euphrates) ran 
in a direction from south to north before flowing out 
into the Tigris, and thus passed to the east of the 
Round City. On these suppositions, which a glance 
at the map will show only can agree very partially 
with the facts of the case, all the topographical 
descriptions are based. Thus the B&dur&y& district 
is invariably spoken of as lying east of the $ar£t, 
while the district of Katrabbul was to the west of 
this stream ; we, on the other hand, should rather 
have said that these districts (respectively below 
and above the Round City) lay to the south and 
north of the $ar£t. Again, Ya'kftbi in describing 
the suburbs near the Muhawwal Gate states that 
along the Sar&t, going upstream south (we should 
say west), there are certain fiefs lying to the westward 
(we should say north) of this canal, and the City 



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316 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

of Mansdr as a whole was considered by him to 
have occupied its western bank. This arbitrary view 
of the matter, in regard to the main points of the 
compass, must account for the reference made by 
MasGdi to the B£b-al-Hadid (the Iron Gate) on 
Tfihir's Trench, which he says was a gate of Baghdad 
that opened 'towards the south'; the explanation 
being that the Trench here curves away after leaving 
the §ar&t, and hence the gates along its upper 
course were described as opening 'towards the 
south/ because the Trench, which bifurcated from 
the §ar&t, was held to flow west before turning 
north to flow into the Tigris in a parallel course 
with its parent stream 1 . 

To complete the list of our earliest authorities 
it remains to be mentioned that, besides his work 
on geography (giving us the detailed description of 
Baghdad), Ya'kdbi also wrote a history, which he 
finished in the year 260 (a.d. 874), and dating from 
rather more than half a century later, we have the 
celebrated work called The Meadows of Gold by 
Mas'fidi. From the pages of both these historical 
works, as from the chronicle of Tabarl already 
mentioned, innumerable small details may be gleaned 
regarding the topography of Baghdad, which, though 
incidental and fragmentary, are often invaluable for 
fixing minor points, as may be inferred from the 
number of times these authors have been quoted in 
the notes of all the earlier chapters of this work. 

1 Instances are too numerous for reference in full, but the following 
will be sufficient to prove what is stated above. Ya'kubi, 244; 
Mukaddasi, 120; Mas'udi, vi. 482 ; Yakut, L 640 ; Marasid, ii. 486. 



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CHAPTER XXIII 

RECAPITULATION AND AUTHORITIES: MIDDLE PERIOD 

The building of the Palaces in East Baghdad. The Third Period 
begins. The Buyid Supremacy: their Great Palace: the Dyke of 
Muizz-ad-Dawlah and the Hospital of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah. Istakhrt 
and Ibn Hawkal. Mukaddasi. Decline of the Buyids. The Fourth 
Period begins. The Saljufcs. The History of Baghdad by Khatfb. 
Area of East and West Baghdad. New Baghdad and the Wall of 
Mustazhir : the Saljuk Mosque. The Sieges of Baghdad in the reigns 
of Mansur Rashid and of Muhammad Muktaft. Period of decay : the 
Persian poet Khakanf. Benjamin of Tudela. Ibn Jubayr. Yakut. 
Many separate walled Quarters. The Mustansiriyah College and the 
Harba Bridge. Ibn Khallikan. 

The half century which followed on the return 
of the Caliphs to Baghdad, and which preceded the 
advent of the Buyids, witnessed the building of 
the great palaces (including the Mosque of the Caliph) 
in the southern part of East Baghdad along the river 
bank. These palaces, it will be remembered, lay 
immediately to the south of the Gate of the Tuesday 
Market in the city wall which Musta'in had built, 
and East Baghdad before long was thus almost 
doubled in area. During the transition period, the 
older wall which went in a semicircle round the 
three northern quarters of Rusdfah, Shammfisiyah, 
and Mukharrim, must either have been purposely 4^ 



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318 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

destroyed, or else allowed to fall to ruin, for the 
new quarters, which ultimately sprang up round 
the Palaces of the Firdfts, the Hasant, and the T&j, 
in part overlapped the Mukharrim. In the early 
years of the fourth century (which began a. d. 912), 
the walls of the City of Mansdr in West Baghdad 
had likewise fallen to complete ruin, as also the two 
Palaces of the Golden Gate and the Khuld, the 
ground here as time went on being taken up by 
the new quarters that came to surround the Basrah 
Gate and the gate known as the B&b-al-Muhawwal, 
on the great highroad leading west towards Anb£r 
from the Kftfah Gate of the Round City. 

The Turk body-guard, since the return of the 
Caliphs from S£marr£, had lost all power, and in 
334 (a. d. 946) the third of the periods into which 
it has been found convenient to divide the history 
of the Abbasids began, its outset being marked by 
the advent of the Buyid Prince Muizz-ad-Dawlah 
in Baghdad. The period of the Buyid supremacy 
lasted for rather more than a century, and was 
characterized by the erection of many fine buildings 
in the capital of the Caliphate. The Buyid princes 
were Persian by descent and Shfah by sympathy ; 
they had subjugated both Mesopotamia and the 
region now known as Persia, where various members 
of the family occupied the provincial governments, 
while from this date onward the prince, who was 
recognized as head of the house, as a rule made 
Baghdad his residence, and from this centre of 
authority controlled the Caliph, and in his name 
sought to dominate all Eastern Islam. 

The Buyid princes built their palaces in East 
Baghdad (as related in chapter xvii), on the ground 



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xxiii.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 319 

formerly occupied by the Shamm&styah and part of 
the Mukharrim Quarter; and these palaces, which 
their successors the SaljGk princes took over and 
enlarged, were known by the general name of the 
D&r-as-Saltanah (the Abode of the Sultanate). They 
were begun under Mu izz-ad-Dawlah, the Buyid who 
especially had entitled himself to the lasting gratitude 
of the people of Baghdad by erecting the huge 
dyke which, when kept in repair, prevented the 
inundation of the city by the flooding of the streams 
flowing out into the Tigris at the Shamm&slyah 
lowlands. At a later date, his nephew and suc- 
cessor 'Adud-ad-Dawlah built the hospital in West 
Baghdad on the ruins of the Khuld Palace, and 
this for three centuries was a school of medical 
science, which became famous throughout the East 
under the name of the Btm£rist&n 'Adudi (the 
Hospital of c Adud-ad-Dawlah). 

During the century of the Buyid supremacy we 
have the first three names in the long list of our 
Arab geographers, namely Istakhrl, Ibn Hawkal, 
and Mukaddasi, each of whom has devoted some 
paragraphs of his work to a succinct description of 
Baghdad. The geography of I§takhrl, who wrote 
in 340 (a. d. 9J^i), was re-edited and enlarged by 
Ibn Hawkal in 367 (a. d. 978) ; but as regards 
Baghdad, the two accounts are" practically identical, 
except for a very few minor details. Both mention 
East Baghdad as almost entirely taken up by the 
^palaces; in the first place, by the Palaces of the 
Caliph ^or PJarlm (the royal Precincts), these extend- 
ing in the southern part with their gardens as far 
down as the Nahr Bin, two leagues distant from the 
centre of the town ; and secondly, by the Palace of 



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320 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the Buyid Sultan in the upper part of the city — 
the walls of these two sets of palaces being described 
as rising above the Tigris bank in a continuous line, 
which extended from the Shamm&styah Quarter 
downstream for a distance of about five miles. 
Opposite the Shamm&slyah of the eastern side lay 
the Harbtyah Quarter in West Baghdad, and below 
this stood Karkh, which further at this time gave 
its name in general parlance to all that half of 
Baghdad which lay on the western bank; East 
Baghdad being still known as the RusSfah side, or 
as the Quarter of the BAb-af-TAk, from the great 
arched gate of this name at the head of the Main 
Bridge. 

I§takhrt mentions three great Friday mosques as 
in use at his date, namely the Mosque of Ru§ifah 
and that of the Palace of the Caliph in East 
Baghdad, with the old mosque of the City of Man§ftr 
in West Baghdad ; while Ibn Hawkal (a quarter of 
a century later) adds a fourth, which had come into 
use by his time, namely the Mosque at Bar&th&, on 
the road to Muhawwal Town, originally a shrine 
dedicated to the Caliph 'All, whom the Shl'ahs more 
especially hold in honour. In Kalw£dh& also, down 
the river on the east side, there was at this date 
a great mosque which might rightfully be considered 
as belonging to Baghdad, seeing that the houses of 
the eastern city were contiguous from below the 
Palaces of the Caliph to this outlying township. 
Both I§takhrt and Ibn Hawkal — in spite of the 
numerous magnificent palaces — especially note and 
deplore the ruin which had already befallen many 
quarters formerly flourishing; thus I§takhrl writes 
that all the road between the Main Bridge and the 



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xxiii.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 321 

eastern Khurfis&n Gate had in former days been 
occupied by houses, but that in his time these were 
for the most part already in ruin. 

In Western Baghdad Karkh is said still to be the 
most populous and best preserved quarter, and here 
the merchants who lived at the Y&sirlyah suburb had 
their houses of business. Istakhri then proceeds to 
give a detailed account '(copied without acknow- 
ledgement by all subsequent authorities) of the c lsd 
Canal flowing through Karkh, which was navigable 
for boats from the Euphrates to the Tigris, many 
unnavigable branch canals, namely the §ardt and 
other minor channels, ramifying throughout the 
adjacent quarters. The extreme breadth across 
both halves of the city (East and West Baghdad) 
Istakhri gives at five miles (the same as the length 
given for the palace walls along the eastern river 
bank), and his account concludes with the remark 
that the gardens of the Palaces of the Caliphs and 
others in East Baghdad were almost entirely irri- 
gated by water-channels derived from the Nahrawin 
Canals (whose courses have been carefully described 
by Ibn Serapion), since, according to I§takhrl, the 
Tigris ran at too low a level for its waters to be 
brought into these gardens, except by the mechanical 
contrivance of the water-wheel, called Dftl&b, which 
(says he) involved much labour. 

The account of Baghdad written by Mukaddasi 
* n 375 ( A - D - 985) is less interesting than might 
have been expected from the other portions of his 
excellent and original work. He mentions few 
topographical details, but after expatiating on the 
many advantages of position and climate which 
Mansflr gained by selecting this particular site 



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322 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

for his capital, passes on to lament the present 
ruin of the great city, which he fears would soon 
rival SAmarrd in its state of chronic insurrection 
and infamous misrule. In Karkh, on the west 
bank, he describes the Fief of Rabf as the most 
populous quarter, and states that on this side 
were to be found most of the markets and 
fine houses spared by the general decay. He 
speaks of the hospital lately built by 'Adud-ad- 
Dawlah opposite the Bridge of Boats leading to 
East Baghdad; and in this other half of the city 
the best preserved quarters were, he says, those 
lying round the B&b-a£-T&k (the great Arch at the 
Bridge-head) and near the D&r-al-Amir, namely 
the Palace of the Buyid Princes recently built 
over part of the Shammfislyah Quarter. 

'Adud-ad-Dawlah had died in Baghdad during 
the year 372 (a.d. 982), a short time before Mukad- 
dasi wrote this description, and he was buried (as 
all good Shfahs should be) at Mashhad 'All, the 
celebrated shrine on the Euphrates where the grave 
of the Caliph 'AH was said to have been made. 
After the death of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah the Buyid 
power declined, and a period of internecine war 
followed, which only ended in 447 (a. d. 1055), 
when Tughril Beg the Saljdk, after suppressing 
the last Buyid prince, became master of Baghdad. 
With him begins the period of the Saljftk supremacy 
(the fourth period in the history of the Abbasids), 
which lasted about a century, and is celebrated for 
the acts and deeds of Alp Arslin and Mdlik Shfih. 
The Saljflks were of the Turk race (the Buy ids had 
been Persians), and unlike their predecessors, the 
Saljtik princes for the most part did not reside in 



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xxiii.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 323 

Baghdad, but maintained here a deputy in their 
stead. He acted as their Lieutenant-Governor of 
Mesopotamia, and resided permanently at Baghdad, 
occupying the Buyid Palace now generally called 
the Palace of the Sultan. In other words Baghdad, 
during Saljftk times, was no longer even nominally 
the seat of government in Islam. 

Dating from the earlier years of the Saljflk period 
we have the History of Baghdad, a work written 
by Khatfb in 450 (a. d. 1058), which still unfor- 
tunately remains in manuscript It is full of 
interesting details in regard to the origin and 
position of the various buildings in both the western 
and eastern quarters of the city, and much of it 
has been copied, without any acknowledgement, by 
later compilers such as Yikftt. This work of 
Khatfb contains, for instance, the account of the 
Greek embassy to Baghdad of the year 305 (a.d. 
917 2 ), with the description of the Palaces of the 
Caliphs in the time of Muktadir, and though the 
book is in great part merely a compilation, it is 
a compilation at first hand citing authorities, which 
is more than unfortunately can be said of most of 
the work of later writers. 

The century of the Saljtik supremacy witnessed 
the great expansion of East Baghdad, for during the 
reign of (Muktadir suburbs were found and grew up 
round the Palaces of the Caliph which were after- 
wards surrounded by the city wall in the time of 
Mustazhir. As showing the wide extent of the 

1 See /. R. A. S.> 1897, p. 35. The full name of the writer is 
Ahmad ibn 'Alt al-Khatfb al-Baghdadt, and the name Khattb, meaning 
the ' preacher,' has been adopted for reference in these pages merely for 
convenience of brevity. 

Y 2 



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324 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

town on both banks of the river, even before this 
reign Khaf ib reports that when he lived at Baghdad 
there were six great mosques where the public 
prayers were said on the Friday. These were, four 
in West Baghdad : namely the Mosque of Mansftr 
in the Round City, the Mosque of the yarblyah 
Quarter, that of the Fief of Zubaydah, and the 
Mosque of Bar&thi halfway to Muhawwal on the 
'IsA Canal; while in East Baghdad there were but 
two Friday mosques, namely the Mosque in Rus&fah 
and that which the Caliph 'All Muktafl had built 
in the palace — for the jAmf-as-Sult&n was of later 
date than the time of Khatlb \ 

Khafib also gives some important data concerning 
the area covered by the houses of Baghdad in his 
day, confirming what has been told us in the pre- 
vious century by Istakhri, to the effect that the city 
had then already extended over an area of land 
measuring five miles across in breadth and width. 
The statements found in Khatlb are reckoned in 
terms of the Jarib, a land measure which was a 
square of sixty ells side. Adopting twenty-three 
inches as the mean of the various estimates for 
the length of the DhirA* or ell, three Jaribs andl' 
a third may be taken as equivalent to our acre, I 
or in other words ten Jaribs are equal to three 
acres, and the English square mile would contain 
2,133 Jaribs 2 . 

Coming now to the statements made by Khatlb, 
we find that three valuations of the area of the city 
at different epochs are recorded. The earliest dates 



1 Khatib, folio 103 a ; and for what follows see folio 108 a, b. 
* For this estimate of the Jartb compare Mawardi, p. 265. 



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xxin.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 325 

from the time when Muwaffak, brother of the Caliph 
Mu tamid, was in Baghdad — presumably therefore 
about the year 270 (a. d. 884) — during the Zanj 
rebellion, while the Caliphs still resided at S&marr&. 
It is reported that East Baghdad at this time 
covered 26,250 Jarlbs, West Baghdad covering 
17,500 Jaribs, of which total the cemeteries counted 
for seventy-four Jaribs. These figures give an area 
of about 12! and 8 \ square miles respectively 
for the two halves of the city, east and west, or 
twenty-one square miles in total, the cemeteries 
occupying rather more than twenty-two acres of 
this space. 

Next, at some date nearer to the time of Khatib, 
which is not specified, but when Baghdad had once 
more become 'the Abode of the Caliphate/ the 
numbers recorded are 2 7,000 Jaribs for East Baghdad, 
and for the older city on the western bank, at one 
time 26,750 Jaribs, but at another time 16,750 
Jaribs — unless indeed the higher of these figures be 
regarded as merely a clerical error for the lower, 
though as against this supposition it is to be re- 
marked that each figure is cited and vouched for 
by Khatlb on a separate authority. These figures 
work out as the equivalent of 1 2^ square miles for 
East Baghdad, and for the lower estimate of the 
western city, somewhat under eight square miles. 
In round numbers 20,- square miles for both sides 
at this lower estimate for West Baghdad, while the 
sum total would come up to about twenty-five square 
miles if we accept the higher figure. 

These calculations cannot of course be regarded 
as very exact, but the Arabs were, for their time, 
skilful land surveyors, practising the art for fiscal 



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326 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

assessment and for the laying down of the irrigation 
canals. Further, as above noted, these figures tend 
to confirm the estimate already given by Istakhrt, 
which at five miles across, length and breadth, would 
give twenty-five square miles for the square, and 
19^- square miles for the area of a circle with this 
diameter 1 . How much Baghdad has decreased 
since the times of the Caliphs is made evident by 
the fact that at the present day East Baghdad is 
computed to cover an area of 591 acres, while in 
West Baghdad the remains known as the Old Town 
comprise only 146 acres, giving a total for both 
sides which is equivalent to rather over one square 
mile and a sixth, this diminished area being now 
surrounded by walls whose circuit is estimated at 
about five miles. 

The Saljftks, as already said, had inherited from 
their predecessors, the Buyids, the gteat palace and 
government offices called the Dir-as-Saltanah in 
the upper part of the eastern city. On the south 
side of this Mdlik Sh£h founded the great Saljfik 
mosque known as the jAmi f -as-Sult&n, while at 
about the same time his Wazir Nizdm-al-Mulk built 
and endowed the NizAmlyah College on the land 
by the Tigris bank below the Palaces of the Caliph. 
These buildings both date from the reign of the 
Caliph Muktadl, in .whose time also many new 
quarters were laid out to the north and east of the 
Palaces of the Caliphs, which quarters before long 
came to form the new town of East Baghdad. In 

1 For the length of the side of the Jarfb, namely sixty ells, Khatib uses 
the term Habl y meaning 'a cord, 1 or 'rope,' which apparently is not 
given in this special sense in our dictionaries, and it may therefore 
be worth noting. 



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xxin.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 327 

488 (a.d. 1095), at lh e beginning of the reign of the 
next Caliph, Mustazhir, this new city, lying about 
a mile below the SaljClk Palaces, was surrounded 
by a wall pierced by four gates, which wall (as 
proved by the gateways) is identical in its main 
lines with the present town wall of modern Baghdad. 

The Caliphate, even before the beginning of the 
SaljOk period, had already sunk into political insig- 
nificance, and the Caliphs now having much spare 
time and considerable revenues employed their 
energies in palace building. It is indeed mainly to 
this period that the great tfartm or Precinct, as their 
residence came to be called, owed its magnificence, 
as described in the pages of Y£kOt He mentions 
in particular the great Rayh&ntytn (the Palace on 
the Perfumers' Market), and the second Palace of 
the Crown (Kasr-at-TAj), both of which were built 
at the close of the SaljClk period. 

In the year 530 (a.d. 1136), under the Caliph 
Man§Clr Rishid (not to be confounded with H£r(!ln- 
ar-Rashid), Baghdad sustained a third siege, of only 
two months' duration, however, by an army under 
command of Sultan Mastid the SaljClk. The Sultan, 
who had pitched his siege camp at the MAlikiyah, 
effected a complete blockade of the city, for the 
Governor of W£sit sent him up reinforcements in 
boats which effectually shut the river exit, while 
the populace, taking advantage of the troubles, rose 
in insurrection against the Caliph, plundered the 
quarters of the western city, and sacked the palace 
of the T£hirid Harim, where it is said they gained 
an immense booty. After a blockade of fifty days 
the Caliph Mansflr RAshid finally fled to Mosul, and 
was there forced to abdicate, his uncle Muhammad 



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328 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Muktafl being set up in his place, and Sultan Mas'Od 
retired with his army eastward l . 

A fourth siege took place twenty-one years later, 
during the reign of the Caliph Muhammad Muktaft, 
whose relations with Sultan Muhammad, nephew 
and successor of Sultan Mas'tid aforesaid, had be- 
come so strained in a. h. 551 that the Saljvlk: Sultan, 
marching into € Ir&k, appeared with his army before 
the walls of Baghdad in the month Dhu-1-Ka'adah 
of that year (January, 1 157 a.d.). The Caliph forth- 
with shut himself up in East Baghdad, where a great 
store of munitions and provisions, by his orders, 
had been brought together. The city walls were 
well provided with catapults and mangonels, the 
towers being garrisoned by crossbowmen. Further, 
barges, also carrying crossbowmen and catapults, 
were set to patrol the Tigris — where the bridges of 
boats had been taken up — in order more thoroughly 
to guard the riverside of the eastern city. 

Marching down the great Khur&s&n road, Sultan 
Muhammad effected a junction with his Lieutenant, 
the Governor of Mosul, and himself crossed the 
Tigris above Baghdad. The attack was then begun 
in two divisions, namely from the western quarter 
and from the north-east, where part of the 
army occupied the great Palace of the Saljtiks out- 
side the city wall. Upstream, above Baghdad, 
Sultan Muhammad had already spanned the Tigris 
by a new bridge of boats, thus conveniently to 
connect the two portions of his army. His own 
headquarters were on the Sar&t Canal, but from 
time to time he crossed to the Saljtik Palace of the 

1 The details of the third siege of Baghdad are given by Ibn-al- 
Athir, xi. 26. 



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xxin.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 329 

eastern side in order to urge on the siege operations. 
In East Baghdad the city walls were already closely 
invested by his troops, in spite of frequent sallies 
from within the town, and the besiegers were 
shortly after their arrival reinforced from J^illah, 
Ktifah, W&sit, and Basrah. In spite of numbers, 
however, the siege made but little progress, and at 
the end of two months the Sultan found that his ad- 
vanced positions had come to be so much harassed 
by the mangonels of the townspeople, that he was 
forced to shift his headquarter camp and retire 
westwards to the line of the Nahr 'fsA. His troops 
had more than once directed their attack against the 
river front of East Baghdad, where there was no city 
wall, only the line of the great palaces of the Caliph 
and the garden walls ; but here the assailants were 
easily beaten off by the Baghdad people, and already 
they had lost many of their best men. 

Meanwhile, in the month Safar of 552 (March, 
1 157 a. d.), the tfajj caravan from Mecca arrived 
on its return journey, and the pilgrims were much 
scandalized at the spectacle of the Commander of 
the Faithful being assaulted in his own capital by 
the Saljvlk Sultan. Further, in the course of the 
last two months the Caliph had successfully turned 
the arts of diplomacy against his adversary, and 
Sultan Muhammad in addition to the ill success of 
the siege, now found himself threatened by treason 
at home, where a relative was intriguing to supplant 
him in his capital city of Hamadin. Thus matters 
went rapidly from bad to worse, and in the following 
month of Rabl* I (April), after having been rather 
more than three months fruitlessly encamped before 
Baghdad, Sultan Muhammad in despair of success 



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330 Baghdad during the Caliphate [en. 

precipitately raised the siege. He had to recross the 
Tigris by his new bridge above the Saljflk Palace 
before setting out for Hamad&n with his body-guard 
and personal followers, and his retreat was so ill 
organized that he came near to lose all his baggage 
on the passage of the bridge. The people of Baghdad, 
immediately on hearing of his departure, had come 
pouring out of the city ; they forthwith stormed and 
sacked the great SaljClk Palace, the gates of which 
they tore off, burning all the furniture within its 
precincts, and then suddenly advancing, cut the 
communications between the body-guard of the Sultan 
and the main portion of his army, which had re- 
mained encamped in West Baghdad. Sultan Mu- 
hammad, however, only delaying to recover his 
personal baggage, hastened his retreat along the 
Khur&s&n highroad towards Hamad&n, and the re- 
mainder of his army, under the command of the 
Governor of Mosul, though still in force on the 
western bank, finding that they were thus abandoned 
by their master, promptly retired north on Mosul, 
without any further molestation from the besieged 

The details of this siege, of which the foregoing 
is a condensed account, are graphically related by 
the contemporary historian 'Imdd-ad-Dln of Isfahan, 
who was in Baghdad at the time, and took the 
occasion to indite a congratulatory ode to the 
Caliph Muhammad Muktafl on the success of his 
arms. The account, it is true, adds little to our 
topographical knowledge, but in the dearth of 
contemporary writers it is not without interest 1 . 
A notice of the third siege, that of the year 
a. h. 530, as also very succinctly of this fourth 

1 'Imad-ad-Din, ii. 246 to 255 ; Ibn-al-Athir, xi. 140. 



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xxiii.] Recapitulation: Middle Period 331 

siege of the year a. h. 551, are likewise recorded 
under their respective dates in the chronicle of 
Ibn-al-Athlr, who becomes our best general autho- 
rity for Baghdad after the beginning of the fourth 
century (the tenth a. d.) — when Tabarl and his 
continuator 'Artb have closed their annals — and 
this chronicle carries us down to the year 628 
(a.d. 1230), namely to the reign of the father of the 
last Abbasid Caliph of Baghdad. 

The Saljflk supremacy may be said virtually to 
have come to an end with the death of Sultan 
Sanj&r, the last of the great Saljftks, in 552 (a.d. 
1 157); after which began the fifth and last period 
in the history of Baghdad, which was characterized 
by the almost complete political insignificance of 
the Abbasid Caliphs ; and finally the Caliphate, 
after a century of this dotage, ended with the 
Mongol invasion under Htildgfl in 656 (a. d. 1258). 
During this period the Caliphs were chiefly occupied 
in pulling down and rebuilding ephemeral palaces, 
and with laying out gardens within the Harlm walls, 
all of which futilities appear to have greatly impressed 
the Persian poet Kh&k&nl, who visited Baghdad in 
550 (a. d. 1 155), on his pilgrimage to Mecca. He 
has left us a very rhetorical description (useless, 
unfortunately, for topographical purposes) of what 
he saw in ' the Abode of the Caliphate ' : the gardens, 
he says, are the equal of those of Paradise ; the 
waters of the Tigris, which are only comparable in 
their pellucidness to the tears of the Virgin Mary, 
flow round past the Karkh Quarter, and the river 
surface is everywhere covered with boats which 
Kh&k&nt likens to the cradle of Jesus for their 
grace of build. With a good deal more in this style 



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332 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of bombast, and avoiding any detailed description of 
the town or its palaces, Khdkdnl concludes his 
poem with a long panegyric of the Caliph Muhammad 
Muktafl and of the various learned persons whom 
he saw in Baghdad \ 

Benjamin of Tudela, the Jewish traveller, visited 
Baghdad a few years after the time of KhAkinl, 
approximately in 555 (a. d. 1160), but his narrative 
gives us little topographical information, since his 
attention is wholly directed to enumerating the 
settlements of his co-religionists in Babylonia. He 
states, however, that in his time the Caliph only left 
his palace once a year, namely on the great feast 
day at the close of the Ramad&n Fast, when setting 
forth in procession he visited the mosque near the 
Ba§rah Gate, which same Benjamin of Tudela says 
was the metropolitan mosque of the city. The 
J&mi* of the old Round City of Mansur is evidently 
the place here designated ; but it may be questioned 
(comparing this with the account left us by Ibn 
Jubayr a quarter of a century later) whether either 
the Caliph Muhammad Muktafl or Mustanjid really 
maintained the seclusion of which Benjamin of 
Tudela speaks a . 

The graphic descriptions of Baghdad given by 
the Spanish Arab Ibn Jubayr, who visited Baghdad 
in 581 (a. d. 1 185) are a complete contrast to the 
futilities of the Persian poet Khfik&nt. Ibn Jubayr 
was then on his way back from Mecca, and came up 
the great KOfah highroad from the south, having 

1 Khakani, p. 91. I have to thank my friend Professor E. G. Browne 
of Cambridge for the loan of this work, which I should otherwise have 
failed to see. 

1 Benjamin of Tudela, i. 97. 



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xxni.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 333 

crossed the Euphrates at yillah by the bridge of 
boats recently established here by the Caliph NSsir 
for the convenience of the pilgrims, who formerly 
had had to cross the great river in a ferry. Leaving 
the Euphrates, Ibn Jubayr passed through the town 
of §arsar on the canal of that name, and entered 
Baghdad on the third day of the month $afar, 
corresponding in that year to the middle of May, 
alighting in the suburb of West Baghdad called the 
Kurayyah, which lay over against the Nizdmlyah 
College of the eastern city. 

Ibn Jubayr devotes many pages to the account of 
what he did and saw during the fortnight of his 
sojourn in the capital of the Caliph N&sir, whom he 
had the honour of seeing on more than one occasion. 
He describes West Baghdad as being for the greater 
part in ruin. Its four most populous quarters were : 
first, the Kurayyah Suburb near the Bridge of Boats, 
the best built in the first instance and the least 
dilapidated ; next to this was Karkh, surrounded by 
its own wall; and above was the Quarter of the 
Basrah Gate (for what remained of the Round City 
had now come to be known by the name of its 
south-eastern gateway), with the great Mosque of 
Man§fir, still used for the Friday prayers; lastly, 
the quarter called the Shdrf (the Highroad), along 
the Tigris bank above the \Adudt Hospital, the 
market of which connected the Sh&r? Quarter with 
the Suburb of the Basrah Gate. Other but less 
populous quarters of West Baghdad were the 
y arbiyah, the highest on the river bank, and adjacent 
thereto the 'AttAbtyah, noted for the manufacture of 
the 'AttAbt (tabby) silk and cotton stuffs named 
after it Further, Ibn Jubayr saw the tomb of 



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334 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

MaVftf Karkht near the Basrah Gate Suburb, and 
the shrine of the Im&m Mflsi in the great cemetery 
to the north (known now as the Kdzimayn), this last 
being surrounded by the graves of many distinguished 
and holy personages. 

Across the river in East Baghdad, opposite the 
K&zimayn, was the quarter round the tomb of 
Abu Hanifah, lying above Ru§4fah and its great 
mosque, and round this last were seen the sepulchres 
of many other holy men, and more celebrated still the 
tombs of the Caliphs. At a considerable distance 
below Ru§ifah came the Palaces of the Caliph, cover- 
ing an area estimated at more than a quarter of the 
whole of the eastern city, and the royal precincts 
were encircled by the various palaces of the Abbasid 
nobles, 4 so to speak, imprisoned in their grandeur/ 
Ibn Jubayr was much struck by the beauty of the 
gardens in this quarter; but he remarks that 
the markets of East Baghdad were none the less 
almost entirely supplied by the produce of the lands 
under cultivation on the opposite or western bank. 
There were three great mosques for the Friday 
prayers in use in East Baghdad when Ibn Jubayr 
was there, namely the Mosque of the Caliph within 
the palace ; the Mosque of the Sultan, which lay 
outside, to the north of the Gate of the Sultan in the 
city wall, in front of the SaljOk Palaces ; and, lastly, 
the Rus&fah Mosque, which stood (he says) a mile 
distant from the Mosque of the Sultan aforesaid, in 
the neighbourhood of the shrine of Abu y anlfah. 

In the whole of Baghdad Ibn Jubayr further 
counted eleven mosques where the Friday prayers 
were said, and of tfamm&ms or hot baths, so many 
that none could tell their number, one person 



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xxiii.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 335 

assuring him that there were over two thousand, 
and he adds that in these the halls were so finely 
plastered with bitumen, brought from Ba§rah, that 
the visitor imagined the walls to be lined with slabs 
of black marble. Of colleges — 'each more mag- 
nificent than a palace' — over thirty were to be 
counted, the greatest being the Niz&mtyah, which 
had been recently restored. Lastly, Ibn Jubayr 
describes the city wall with its four gates, which 
went in a semicircle round East Baghdad, from the 
Tigris bank above, to the river again below the city 
quarters ; and this wall, as already said, is virtually 
identical with the present wall round modern Baghdad, 
for one of the extant gates still bears an inscription 
set up by the Caliph N4§ir, who was reigning when 
Ibn Jubayr visited Baghdad. 

Towards the close of the reign of this same Caliph 
N£§ir, and about the year 623 (a.d. 1226), Y&ktit 
wrote his great Geographical Dictionary (the articles 
arranged in alphabetical order), which forms perhaps 
the greatest storehouse of geographical facts compiled 
by any one man during the Middle Ages. He knew 
Baghdad intimately, having been brought up there, 
but wrote at a distance, compiling uncritically, and 
hence in minor points of detail he is sometimes 
guilty of egregious blunders. His description of 
the Palaces of the Caliph is invaluable, but his 
statements concerning the relative positions of places 
and quarters in Baghdad, especially in regard to the 
points of the compass, are both vague and con- 
tradictory. If we were without the works of his 
predecessors, it would be impossible, following his 
accounts alone, to draw up any consistent plan of 
Baghdad ; but with the earlier systematic descriptions 



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336 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of Ya'kfibt and Ibn Serapion to fall back on, enabling 
us to correct his frequent minor errors, the plan 
of the city having thus been laid down gains a 
fullness of detail that would be unattainable without 
the information contained in the long series of 
articles in his Dictionary. 

He describes (under various articles) West 
Baghdad as consisting in his day of a number of 
separate quarters, each enclosed by its own wall. 
Thus the Harblyah in the northern part of West 
Baghdad lay 'like a separate walled town/ nearly two 
miles distant from the remainder of old Baghdad, 
and it was surrounded by many waste lands. The 
Harblyah included several minor quarters, and to 
the west of it lay the separate townships of the 
Chahir Sftj (Four Markets), of which the 'Att&blyah 
(noticed already by Ibn Jubayr) was the best known 
part. South of the Harblyah stood the old mosque 
of Mansilr, which was included in the Quarter of the 
Basrah Gate, this gate, as already said, having given 
its name to all that still continued to be habitable of 
the Round City. The Karkh&yi Canal, according 
to Y&ktit, had disappeared, but the great merchants' 
quarter of Karkh remained standing * a horse gallop ' 
(or about half a mile) distant from the Basrah Gate 
Quarter, and the population of this last being of the 
orthodox Sunnl faith were the rivals of the Karkh 
people, who were all bigoted heterodox Shfahs. 

Adjoining Karkh, and on the Tigris bank, was 
the Kurayyah and the Quarter of the Kall&ytn 
Canal, where fried meats were sold, also the T&bik 
Canal Quarter, which in the time of Ydktit had 
been recently burnt down ; and hence, as he says, 
these were already for the most part merely so many 



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xxm.] Recapitulation : Middle Period 337 

rubbish heaps. The quarter round the Muhawwal 
Gate, lying inland from Karkh, and inhabited by 
Sunnls who were always at feud with their Shi* ah 
neighbours, appears to have still retained some of 
its former opulence ; while the town of Muhawwal, 
a league beyond the outer suburbs of West Baghdad, 
was populous and famous for its excellent markets. 
Tihe Shfinfzlyah Cemetery lay to the south of Karkh, 
while to the north of the Harbfyah extended 
the great burial-ground round the shrine of the 
Im&m Mtisd, afterwards known as the K&zimayn. 

On the eastern bank, the centre of population 
was the great Palace of the Caliph, described as 
occupying a third part of the whole area of the 
city; all round this lay a network of markets and 
streets extending to the city wall, and in places 
going beyond it. Outside and at some distance 
to the north of this wall was Rus&fah with its 
mosque surrounded by the tombs of the Caliphs ; 
while upstream, beyond this again lay the quarter 
named after the shrine of Abu Hanlfah, with its own 
market ; and these two outlying suburbs, with the 
neighbouring Christian quarter, called the D&r-ar- 
Rtim (House of the Greeks), were all that remained 
habitable in the time of YdkAt of the older part of 
the eastern city, which formerly had consisted of the 
three great quarters of Rusifah, Shamm&styah, and 
the Mukharrim. 

Y&kGt, it will be seen by the dates, describes 
Baghdad for us as the great city stood immediately 
prior to the Mongol invasion ; and the only building 
of note erected after his time by the Caliphs was 
the Mustan§irlyah College. This was built by 
Mustansir, the father of the last of the Abbasids, 



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338 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

and the description of it is given in the contemporary 
chronicle of Abu-1-Faraj. The ruin of this college 
still exists, and at some distance from it stands the 
minaret of a mosque also inscribed with the name 
of this same Caliph. No mention, however, of 
Mustan§ir having built a mosque occurs in the 
chronicles, and (as stated in a previous chapter) 
it seems probable that these remains of the so-call^i 
Mustansirtyah Mosque are in reality those of the far 
older mosque of the palace (built by 'Alt Muktaft 
more than three centuries before), which Mustansir 
having restored, caused to be ornamented with the 
inscription now bearing his name. It may be added 
that besides these buildings in the city of Baghdad, 
Mustansir also constructed the magnificent stone 
bridge of four great arches over the Dujayl Canal 
near the town of Harbfi, as is mentioned by the 
historian Fakhri, the remains of which still exist 
and have been carefully described by Captain Felix 
Jones, R.N. 1 

In the dearth of authorities for the last centuries 
of the history of Baghdad, the great Biographical 
Dictionary compiled about the year 654 (a. d. 1256) 
by Ibn Khallik&n is a very useful work of reference. 
He was a native of Arbela, near Mosul in Upper 
Mesopotamia, and though he does not appear 
himself to have visited Baghdad, he was evidently 
well acquainted with the history of its public 
buildings. From incidental remarks in the various 
biographies we often gain information — concerning 
the later buildings especially — which is lacking in 

1 Fakhri, 38a Jones, 252, where two drawings of this bridge will 
be found, also the copy of the inscription by Mustansir which it bears, 
dated the year 629 (a.D. 1232). 



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xxiii.] Recapitulation: Middle Period 339 

the meagre chronicles of this period ; thus his article 
on Mdlik Shdh is our only authority for the fact that 
this prince was the founder of the J&mi c -as-Sultfin, 
the great Friday mosque of the Saljftks in East 
Baghdad, outside the Palace of the Sultan. Ibn 
Khallikin died at Damascus in 681 (a. d. 1282), 
a score of years after the Mongol sack of Baghdad ; 
but of these recent events he maintains a discreet 
silence in his dictionary, which deals with the 
notable personages of the past age only, and we 
have to fall back on Persian histories for details 
of the great siege. 



z 2 



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CHAPTER XXIV 



RECAPITULATION AND AUTHORITIES: FINAL PERIOD 

The Fall of Baghdad : the Mongol invasion. Persian Histories : 
the Tabakat-i-Nasirt, Rashid-ad-Dfn, and Wassaf. Details of the 
Mongol siege. Death of the last Caliph Musta'sim. The Marasid-al- 
Iftila'. Summary of history of Baghdad since the Mongol siege. Ibn 
Batujah, the Berber. Hamd-Allah, the Persian. The tomb of 'Abd- 
al-Kadir of Gflan. Modern descriptions of Baghdad : Tavernier and 
Niebuhr. The so-called tomb of Zubaydah. The Plan of mediaeval 
Baghdad and of the modern city. Excavations required to discover 
the sites of the three ancient Mosques. 

For the details of the fall of Baghdad and the 
great siege by Hfiligti the Mongol, we. have to 
consult, in the main, the works of Persian historians, 
since Ibn-al-Athlr closes his chronicle with the year 
a.h. 628, and neither Abu-1-Faraj nor Abu-1-Fidd 
affords much information on this subject. Indeed, 
of the Mongol siege in the seventh century a. h., we 
know far less than we do, thanks to Tabart, of 
the first siege in the time of the Caliph Amtn in 
the second century a.h. 

The Persian history called the Tabak&t-i-Nfi§iri, 
which was written shortly after 658 (a.d. 1260), is 
a contemporary authority for the times of Htil&gfl, 
and this with the information found in the work of 



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Recapitulation : Final Period 341 

Rashid-ad-Dln, also written in Persian, which was 
finished in 710 (a.d. 13 10), provides a fairly clear 
account of the siege operations \ ! After overrunning 
and devastating Western Persia, the Mongol armies 
poured down the great KhurAsin road from ft ulw&n, 
the main body marching direct on East Baghdad. 
A considerable detachment, however, had been sent 
upstream, with orders to cross the Tigris at Takrtt, 
thence to make a sweep round, and after capturing 
Anb&r on the Euphrates, these troops were to 
approach West Baghdad by the line of the 'fsi 
Canal. 

The Mongol forces were led by Htil&gfl (grandson 
of Changtz Kh£n) who commanded the centre division 
in person, and he pitched his camp to the east of 
Baghdad, the siege beginning in the middle of 
Muharram of the year 656 (January, 1258). His 
main attack was directed against the 'left of the 
city ' — to one coming from Persia — namely the Burj 
'Ajami (the Persian Bastion) and the tjalbah Gate. 
The right wing of the Mongol army lay before ' the 
breadth of the city,' that is, on the north side, facing 
the gate of the Market of the Sultan, or the B&b- 
as-Sulfin ; and the left wing was encamped before 



1 Another almost contemporary writer is Wassaf, the historiographer 
of Gh&zan the tl-Khan of Persia. He was born at Shiraz in a.d. 1263, 
five years, therefore, after the Mongol siege of Baghdad, and must 
have known personally many of those who had taken part in this 
famous event. His history was composed in the year 700 (a.d. 1300), 
and I have gone through the pages of this work which are devoted to 
Hulagu and the siege, but have been unable to glean a single fact not 
already mentioned by Rashfd-ad-Dm ; the bombastic style in which 
Wassaf writes being indeed but ill adapted for conveying any precise 
topographical information. Fakhri is a contemporary Arabic authority ; 
he wrote in the year 700 (a.d. 1300), and had been in Baghdad, but 
his account of the siege gives few topographical details. 



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342 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

the KalwddhA Gate at the southern extremity of 
East Baghdad. The detachments that had pre- 
viously been sent north across the river, after de- 
feating the armies of the Caliph Musta'sim on the 
right bank of the Tigris, took up their positions in 
two attacks, one near the 'Adudl Hospital at the 
upper (older Main) Bridge of Boats, while the second 
had its siege camp below this to the southward, 
probably near the lower bridge opposite the Palace 
of the Caliph, and outside the quarter known as 
the Kurayyah. 

On the western bank, the lower camp of the Mon- 
gols is variously described as having been pitched 
at the place called DCkl&b-i-Bakal (in the Persian 
history of Rashld-ad-Dln), or at the Mabkalah (ac- 
cording to Abu-1-Faraj), the former name meaning 
* the water-wheel of the vegetable (garden)/ and the 
latter 'the kitchen garden,' both terms reminding 
us of the older Ddr-al-Battlkh (Fruit Market), 
which stood, according to Ibn Serapion, in this part 
of West Baghdad \ The Kalah or Citadel, which 
is also mentioned by Rashld-ad-Dln when describing 
the attack on the west side, presumably has refer- 
ence to what in the thirteenth century a.d. still 
remained standing of the old fortifications of the 
Round City of Manstir. 

The siege operations, pushed to the uttermost by 
Hftl&gG outside the city, were but too well seconded 
by treachery within the walls of Baghdad, for both 
Karkh and the quarter round the shrine of the 
Im&m Mtis4 in the Kdzimayn were inhabited by 
Shfahs, who to prove their abhorrence of the Sunnl 
Caliph corresponded traitorously with the infidel 
1 See above, p. 85. 



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xxiv.] Recapitulation : Final Period 343 

enemy. After a blockade of about fifty days, a great 
assault was ordered at the Persian Bastion south of 
the Halbah Gate, and East Baghdad being taken 
by storm, the Caliph Musta c §im was finally brought 
out prisoner with his family and lodged in the 
Mongol camp. Shortly afterwards Htil&gft on enter- 
ing the city took up his residence in what Rashld- 
ad-Dln calls the Maymtoiyah (the Monkey-house), 
doubtless a designed corruption for the name of the 
Mamflnlyah Quarter, which lay on the side of East 
Baghdad nearest to what had been the headquarter 
camp of the Mongols. 

The sack of Baghdad which followed lasted forty 
days, during which time a large proportion of the 
inhabitants were butchered in cold blood; while a 
conflagration which destroyed the Mosque of the 
Caliph, the shrine of M£lsd-al-Kdzim, and the tombs 
of the Caliphs at Ru§4fah, besides most of the 
streets and private houses, completed the ruin of 
the city. The death of the Caliph Musta c §im, and 
of his sons, followed close on these events — the 
details of their ' martyrdom ' are variously given in 
different authorities, who, however, agree as to the 
main facts — and then the Mongol hordes passed on 
to further conquests and fresh plunder; Hfll&gA 
leaving orders that the great Mosque of the Caliph 
and the shrine of MftsS. in the Kdzimayn should 
be rebuilt 1 . 

1 A full description of the fall of Baghdad, carefully put together 
from all available sources— Arabic, Persian, and Turkish— will be 
found in Sir H. Howorth's History of the Mongols (Hi. 113 to 133). 
For the death of the Caliph Musta'sim the well-known account given 
by Marco Polo (i. 65), which is confirmed by the Chronicle of Ibn 
Furat, his contemporary, is presumably true in the main facts. See 
a paper in the/. R. A. S. for 1900, p. 293, by the present writer. 



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344 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

The state of ruin to which Baghdad was reduced 
by the Mongol sack is clearly indicated, half a century 
later, in the Mar&sid, an epitome of Ydktit's 
Geographical Dictionary, which was composed about 
the year 700 (a.d. 1300) by an anonymous author. 
This book gives a summary of the facts detailed 
in the more voluminous work ; but in addition, the 
epitomist, when treating of places personally known 
to him, constantly supplies emendations for correct- 
ing Y&kflt, and states how matters stood in his own 
day. Hence, though primarily only an epitome of 
a compilation, the Mardsid has for Baghdad and 
Mesopotamia the value of an authority at first hand. 
The authors description of Baghdad city is graphic 
and terse. After referring to the ruin brought about 
by a long succession of plundering armies — Persian, 
Turk, and Mongol — each of which had in turn 
wasted the goods and houses of the former inhabitants, 
he concludes with the following paragraph : — 

' Hence nothing now remains of Western Baghdad 
but some few isolated quarters, of which the best 
inhabited is Karkh ; while in Eastern Baghdad, all 
having long ago gone to ruin in the Shamm&siyah 
Quarter and the Mukharrim, they did build a wall 
round such of the city as remained, this same lying 
along the bank of the Tigris. Thus matters con- 
tinued until the Tatars (under HAlSgft) came, when 
the major part of this remnant also was laid in ruin, 
and its inhabitants were all put to death, hardly one 
surviving to recall the excellence of the past. And 
then there came in people from the countryside, who 
settled in Baghdad, seeing that its own citizens 
had all perished; so the city now is indeed other 
than it was, its population in our time being wholly 



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xxiv.] Recapitulation : Final Period 345 

changed from its former state — but Allah, be He 
exalted, ordaineth all 1 .' 

The history of Baghdad, from the date of the 
Mongol invasion (a. d. 1258) to the present time, 
may be summed up in a few paragraphs : in fact, 
from having been the real or nominal capital of 
Islam Baghdad now became merely the chief town 
of the Province of Arabian 'Irdlc. 

The descendants of Hfildgti, the tl-Khans, after 
governing Persia and Mesopotamia for something 
less than a century, were succeeded by the Jalayrs 
in Mesopotamia, Shaykh Hasan Buzurg, chief of the 
line, making Baghdad his residence in a. d. 1340. In 
A - D « 1 393 Timur occupied Baghdad, remaining there 
a couple of months, and on his departure left orders 
to his lieutenant, Mirzi Abu Bakr, to rebuild the 
city, which had then fallen for the most part to ruin. 
After the death of Timur, Sultan Ahmad the Jalayr 
in part recovered possession of his dominions, but 
in a. d. 141 1 the dynasty gave place to the Kara- 
Kuyunli, the Turkomans of the ' Black Sheep,' who 
occupied Baghdad till they were in turn dispossessed, 
in a.d. 1469, by the rival clan of the Ak-Kuyunli 
or ' White Sheep ' Turkomans. 

In a.d. 1508 the troops of Sh&h Ism&tl I of 
Persia took Baghdad from these Turkomans : but 
the Persians gave place to the Ottoman Turks 
in a. d. 1534, when the general of Sultan Sulaymin 
the Magnificent conquered the city. In a. d. 1623, 
under Sh&h 'Abbis the Great, the Persians, through 
the treachery of Baklr Agh& the Janissary, once 
more became masters of Baghdad ; but a few years 
later, in a. d. 1638, they were again driven out, when 
1 Marasid, i. 163. 



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346 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

Sultan Mur&d IV conquered the city. And since 
this date Baghdad has been the residence of the 
Turkish Pasha of Mesopotamia. 

Our latest Arab authority for Baghdad is Ibn 
Battitah, the Berber, whose travels may rival those 
of his contemporary Marco Polo in extent. In his 
book he takes Ibn Jubayr as his model, and he cites 
long passages from the work of his predecessor ; 
but unfortunately does not always state quite clearly 
whether what Ibn Jubayr had described in 581 
(a. d. 1 185) was what he, Ibn Baffltah, had still 
found existing in Baghdad at the date of his own 
sojourn there in the year 727 (a. d. 1327). This 
vagueness of statement at times militates against 
the value of his work from a topographical point of 
view. Ibn BatCktah, however, describes some buildings 
of a later date than Ibn Jubayr ; the Mustansirtyah 
College, for example, indicating where this stood in 
Eastern Baghdad, and hence, since its ruins still 
exist, enabling us to add another fixed point for 
connecting modern Baghdad with the plan of the 
city in the times of the Caliphs. Further, Ibn 
Batfltah (unless indeed in this he is merely servilely 
copying his predecessor Ibn Jubayr), appears to 
have been the last authority who saw the three 
great mosques of the older capital still standing : — 
namely the Mosque of Man§flr in West Baghdad, 
and the Rus&fah Mosque on the eastern side, lying 
one mile distant from its neighbour the Mosque of 
the Salj&k Sultan. At the present day, these three 
buildings seem to have entirely disappeared, as also 
all vestiges of the 'Adudl Hospital, which in the 
fourteenth century a.d. was a ruin standing on 
the right bank of the Tigris, at the place where the 



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xxiv.] Recapitulation : Final Period 347 

older Main Bridge of Boats had crossed the river to 
Rusdfah. 

The last Moslem authority for Baghdad is the 
Persian historian and geographer Hamd-Allah, 
surnamed Mustawft (the Treasurer), who was the 
contemporary of Ibn Batfitah, the Berber. He 
wrote an Universal History called the Tartkh-i- 
Guzidah (the Choice Chronicle) and a work on 
Geography called the Nuzhat-al-Kulilb (the Heart's 
Delight), the later work having been completed in 
the year 740 (a.d. 1339). Hamd-Allah describes 
Baghdad, both east and west, as in his day surrounded 
by walls. The eastern city wall had four gates, and 
from the river bank above to the river bank below, 
followed a semicircle measuring in circuit 18,000 
paces. The western suburb, which as a whole was 
called Karkh, had two gates in its wall, and this 
wall measured 12,000 paces in its semicircular sweep. 
The description of Hamd-Allah is thus, virtually 
identical with that given by Ibn Jubayr, his pre- 
decessor by two centuries, and in the matter of the 
walls corresponds with what is now found to exist 
in modern Baghdad. Hamd-Allah does not give 
names to the two Karkh gates, but the four gates 
in East Baghdad are named, and they may be easily 
identified with those mentioned by Ibn Jubayr, and 
are identical with the four that still exist under 
other names at the present day. 

Hamd-Allah especially describes the shrines of 
Baghdad ; namely the K&zimayn with the tomb 
of Ibn Hanbal and the tomb of MaW Karkhi 
on the west bank; and on the eastern side the 
shrine of Abu Hanlfah. These, for the most part, 
exist at present, and in his day also, though no trace 



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348 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

of them now remains, the tombs of the Caliphs 
might still be seen in Rus&fah, standing apart by 
themselves like 'a little town/ He is also one of 
the first to mention the shrine of \Abd-al-K4dir of 
Gil&n, which is a noted place of pilgrimage in modern 
Baghdad; this 'Abd-al-K&dir being the celebrated 
founder of the Kidirtyah sect of dervishes — one of 
the most widespread religious orders of Islam — who 
dying at Baghdad in 65 1 (a. d. 1253) was buried there 
a few years before the Mongol siege. 

Coming down to modern times, one of the earliest 
travellers who has described Baghdad (giving also a 
rough plan) is the celebrated French jeweller J. B. 
Tavernier, who, on his way to and from India, travelled 
through Mesopotamia in 1632 and again in 1652. His 
noticeof Baghdad is of the latter date, to wit a fewyears 
after the Turkish conquest under Sultan Mur&d IV. 

His description and plan show that the city was 
then much what it is now, except that the area 
within the walls was then less given up to ruin. 
On the eastern bank of the Tigris, the town 
was surrounded by its wall of burnt brick, some 
three miles in total circumference, with bastions at 
intervals, having a deep ditch without The area 
covered by houses measured some fifteen hundred 
paces in length by seven or eight hundred paces 
in breadth. The wall was pierced (as at the 
present day) by four gates : namely ' Maazan 
Capi/ the gate leading north-west to the Muazzam 
Shrine ; then two gates in the length of the wall on 
the north-eastern side, each of which Tavernier has 
marked as 'porte mur6e,' these being the present 
B4b-al-Wus#nt and B4b-at-Talism, which last is 
still closed as by order, it is said, of Sultan Mur&d IV ; 



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xxiv.] Recapitulation : Final Period 349 

finally, the gate to the south-east downstream now 
known as the B&b-ash-Sharkl, which Tavernier names 
' Cara Capi ' or the Black Gate. 

At the Bridge-head also was a gateway called 
'Sfl Capi' or the Water- Gate, and the Bridge of 
Boats led across to the suburb of West Baghdad, 
described as 'le Faubourg dans la M£sopotamieV 

A hundred years after the time of Tavernier 
Baghdad was visited by Carstein Niebuhr, then 
on his way home after his celebrated journey in 
Arabia. He passed through Mesopotamia about 
the year 1750, and has left a description of Baghdad, 
the accuracy of which modern authorities confirm in 
every point : noting all the remains of the ancient 
city that then could be with certainty identified, 
most of which are also again mentioned in the 
Report of Commander Felix Jones, written in 1857. 

What may be seen here at the present day is as 
follows. The seat of the Turkish provincial govern- 
ment is in the Eastern City on the Persian side of 
the Tigris, and the old wall surrounds the town 
on the land side, pierced by the four ancient gate- 
ways, one of which, the B&b-at-Talism (the Gate of 
the Talisman), as already stated, bears the inscription 
of the Caliph N&§ir. The ruins of both the Mustan- 
§irlyah College and the mosque exist, and not very 
far from this last stands the shrine of 'Abd-al-K&dir 
of Gilin, which, as already said, dates back to the 
last days of the Caliphate. 

Above the city, on the eastern Tigris bank, stands 
the tomb of the Im&m Abu Hanlfah in the village 
now known as Al-Mu'azzam, and on the western 
bank, opposite this, Niebuhr especially mentions 

1 Tavernier, i. 230-239. 



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350 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

that the sepulchre of the Im&m Ibn Hanbal (more 
correctly of c Abd-Allah Ibn Hanbal) had formerly 
existed, but that shortly before his visit in 1750, 
this tomb had been carried away by the floods of the 
Tigris. On the western bank also, but above the 
Muazzam village of the east side, is the Shfah 
shrine of the Kdzimayn, some of the buildings of 
which may date from the times of the Caliphate ; 
but of the Round City of Man§tir apparently nothing 
remains — unless it be the KCkfic inscription bearing 
the date 333 (a.d. 945), which Sir H. Rawlinson 
describes as existing in this Quarter in the Convent 
(Takiyeh) of the Bektash Dervishes. 

What is now called the Old Town on this western 
bank, occupies part of the site of the older Karkh 
suburb, as is proved by the tomb of MaVCkf Karkhl 
which still exists, standing at some distance outside 
its western gate, and this has been a much venerated 
shrine since the date of his death in the year 200 
(a.d. 816). Niebuhr mentions as situated in this 
same neighbourhood the tomb of a certain Bahliil 
Dinah, whom he describes as having been a relative 
and boon companion of the Caliph H£rfln-ar-Rashtd, 
the gravestone bearing for date the year 501 (a.d. 
1 108). This personage apparently is not noticed 
by any other authority, and H&r£kn-ar-Rashid, in 
point of fact, had been dead more than three 
centuries at the date inscribed on the tomb. 

In regard to the so-called tomb of Zubaydah, 
which now lies a little to the south of that of Ma c r£kf 
Karkhl, the facts cited in the Chronicle of Ibn- 
al-Athir (see above, p. 165) are wholly against the 
assumption that this was the place of her burial. 
The older authorities, who mention the neighbouring 



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xxiv.] Recapitulation : Final Period 351 

shrine of Ma'rflf, make no allusion to any tomb near 
here of the celebrated wife of H&rfln-ar-Rashid ; 
further, in the Chronicle just named, it is distinctly 
stated that Zubaydah was buried in the cemetery 
of the K&zimayn, lying near the river bank some 
three miles to the north of the picturesque monu- 
ment which apparently has for the last two centuries 
borne her name. Niebuhr, who describes the tomb 
as it stood in the last century, gives the text of the 
Arabic inscription which in his day adorned it. In 
this it is set forth that ' Ayishah Kh&num, daughter 
of the late Mustafi P&sh&, and wife of ftusayn 
P4sh4, Governor of Baghdad, was buried here in 
Muharram of the year 1131 (November, a.d. 1718), 
her grave having been made in the sepulchre of 
the Lady Zubaydah, granddaughter of the Abbasid 
Caliph Manstir, and wife of Hirtin-ar-Rashld, the 
date of whose death is correctly given as having 
occurred in the year 216 (a.d. 831). 

To this information Niebuhr adds the statement 
that the tomb of Zubaydah had been restored when 
the Turkish Khinum was buried here, some thirty 
years before he visited Baghdad, but by whom the 
monument was originally built appears to have been 
then unknown. Sir H. Rawlinson, who lived for 
many years in Baghdad, writes that the tomb of 
Zubaydah was first erected in a.d. 827, corresponding 
with a.h. 212 ; but this would be four years before the 
date of her death as recorded on the unimpeachable 
authority of Tabart, and Sir Henry gives no authority 
for his statement. He also, apparently, entertained 
no doubts as to the present monument being the 
resting-place of this princess, so famous both in 
the chronicles and the Thousand and One Nights ; 



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352 Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

though this attribution, as already stated, is entirely 
negatived by the earlier authorities. Indeed, as far 
as is known, the first mention of this building being 
considered to be the tomb of the Lady Zubaydah 
appears to date from the eighteenth century only, 
when in a.d. 1718 Husayn P&sh& buried his wife 
here, in what at that time he was told had been 
the sepulchre of the famous Abbasid princess \ 

In conclusion a few paragraphs may serve to 
explain how the attempt has been made, in the pre- 
ceding chapters, to lay down the limits of mediaeval 
Baghdad on the plan of the modern city. The 
landmarks are, of course, the few ancient vestiges 
that still remain to mark the sites of buildings 
mentioned during the times of the Caliphs ; and 
starting from the plan of the present walled city on 
the east bank of the Tigris, we have to work back- 
wards to the Round City of Mansflr on the western 
bank, of which no trace now exists. 

It will be remembered that East Baghdad of the 
present day has four gates, and there appears to be 

1 For illustrations representing the so-called tomb of Zubaydah, 
and the shrine of Ma'ruf Karkhi, see Jones, 311. It is possible that 
this modern tomb of Zubaydah may be the building described in the 
twelfth century A.D. by Ibn Jubayr, and which Ibn Batutah saw in 
a.d. 1327 standing near the highroad outside the old Basrah Gate 
(Ibn Jubayr, 227 ; Ibn Batutah, ii. 108). The tomb within this shrine 
then bore an inscription stating that 'Awn and Mu'in were buried 
here, two of the descendants of the Caliph c Ali, son-in-law of the 
prophet Muhammad. In the fourteenth century A.D. this same shrine 
is described as a beautiful building, within which was the gravestone 
lying under a spacious dome-shaped monument. It would seem not 
unlikely that in the course of the next three centuries, the inscription 
having become illegible, and all memory of these Alids long forgotten, 
popular tradition may have fixed on this tomb as that which had been 
built over the remains of the celebrated wife of Harun-ar-Rashfd, 
more especially since her real sepulchre in the Kazimayn probably 
did not survive the Mongol siege, and the subsequent conflagration. 



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xxrv.] Recapitulation : Final Period 353 

no reason to doubt that these, with the town wall, 
are identical in position with what is described by 
Ibn Jubayr as existing in a.d. 1185; further, the 
ruins of the Mustansirlyah College and the ancient 
minaret of the Mosque of the Caliph still mark the 
upper limit of the palace precincts, which, lying within 
an encircling wall on the river bank, originally occupied 
about a third of the area of the present walled town. 
Another fixed point on this eastern side is the 
existing shrine of Abu Hanlfah, which, we are told, 
stood immediately above the Rus&fah Mosque ; the 
Quarters of Rus&fah and Mukharrim lying between 
this point and the wall of the present town, one 
beyond the other on the Tigris bank. Above the 
Abu Hanlfah Shrine was the Upper Bridge of Boats, 
while the Shammistyah Gate and suburb stretched 
back from the river, and to the north of the Mukharrim 
Quarter. 

The Shamm&siyah Quarter of the east bank lay 
opposite the Harblyah Quarter of Western Baghdad ; 
and this suburb spreading out below the tombs of 
the Kizimayn enclosed in a great semicircular sweep 
the northern side of the Round City of Manstir. 
The present K&zimayn Shrine is the landmark 
fixing the upper limit of West Baghdad, and its 
position in regard to the City of Manstir is clearly 
set forth in the old accounts. The position of the 
City of Man§iir and of its four gates is fixed, within 
certain narrow limits, by the facts stated as to its 
size : — its four equidistant gates having been a mile 
apart one from the other, while that known as the 
Khur&s&n Gate opened on the river and the Main 
Bridge. The Main Bridge-head, on the eastern side, 
was below Ru§&fah and above Mukharrim, these 

BAGHDAD A a 



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354 -Baghdad during the Caliphate [ch. 

two quarters being divided by the great eastern 
highroad that went along the south side of the 
Shamm&styah from the Main Bridge to the Khu- 
ris&n Gate of the (upper) eastern city. 

The site of the Rusfifah Mosque must have been 
in the loop of the Tigris above the Main Bridge, 
for the palaces of the Buy ids and Saljftks afterwards 
stretched from the river bank above the shrine of 
Abu Hanlfah to near the river bank again at the 
Z&hir Garden in the Mukharrim Quarter immediately 
below the bridge. Here the great Mosque of the 
Sultan was afterwards built by M&lik Sh&h, which 
stood a mile distant from the older Rusifah 
Mosque, and it lay at a considerable distance outside 
the upper gate of the wall of later (and modern) 
Eastern Baghdad. This gate of the later wall 
appears to be almost identical in position with the 
more ancient gate of the Tuesday Market, the lowest 
in the line of the older wall which had surrounded 
the three Northern Quarters of Mukharrim, Sham- 
m&slyah and Ru§fifah; for this older wall of the 
Northern Quarters went from below the Lower 
Bridge inland to the Abraz Gate (which we know 
from YAktit stood within the area of the modern 
city) and thence going up past the Khur&sdn and 
Barad&n Gates rejoined the river bank again at the 
Shamm&styah Gate, some distance above the shrine 
of Abu Hanlfah, over against the Kizimayn on the 
west bank. The line of this older wall can only 
be traced approximately by plotting in the various 
roads and gates mentioned, but its general course 
is clearly indicated by many incidental references. 

In Western Baghdad a fixed point is the present 
shrine of MaVtif Karkhl, which we are told lay 



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xxiv.] Recapitulation: Final Period 355 

outside the Basrah Gate of the Round City ; and 
the positions of the Ba§rah and Ktifah Gates — lying 
a mile apart one from the other, and opening on the 
highroads going, respectively, south to Ktifah, and 
down the Tigris bank — are fixed within narrow 
limits by the Ma'rfkf Shrine, The present Bridge 
of Boats, which crosses the Tigris opposite the 
remains of the Mustansidyah College, is almost 
certainly identical in position with the bridge men- 
tioned by Ibn Jubayr and Y4fcflt as starting from 
the Kagr'lsd Quarter, which was separated by the 
Lower Harbour, at the mouth of the c fs4 Canal, 
from the Kurayyah Quarter, The positions of 
these two quarters in regard to the Basrah Gate 
of the Round City are thus fixed ; and the Kuray- 
yah Quarter lay opposite the Nizdmlyah College in 
Eastern Baghdad, which stood near the Tigris bank 
between the Palaces of the Caliphs and the city wall 
at the Kalw&dhi Gate, which last is now known as 
the B&b-ash-Sharkt of modern Baghdad. 

The courses of the*fs& Canal, the $ar£t, and the 
Trench of T&hir, with their numerous branches, 
also the site of the town of Muhawwal, of which 
apparently nothing now remains, are all fixed, within 
narrow limits, by a line drawn from the point where 
the Nahr c lsA left the Euphrates below Anb&r to 
the mouth of this canal, where its waters poured 
into the Tigris at the Lower Harbour immediately 
below the Palace Bridge and opposite the Mustan- 
?irlyah College. Further, the curves followed by 
the 'f sk Canal and the $ar&t, with their connecting 
watercourses, have to be laid down so as to carry 
these round the circle of the City of Man§flr, which, 
with the Harblyah Quarter, lay between the $arfit 

a a 2 



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356 Baghdad during the Caliphate 

and the Trench of T&hir ; due account being taken 
of the network of waterways described by Ibn 
Serapion which thus enveloped the Round City to 
the south, west, and north, while the Tigris bank 
marked its eastern limit 

Such, in brief outline, is the method that has 
been followed in constructing the accompanying 
plans; the details are filled in from the incidental 
mention by many authorities of the relative positions 
of places; and that in their general lines these 
plans are fairly exact appears to be proved by the 
plotting-out, where various minor points from diverse 
authors all work into the places indicated by the 
two contemporary descriptions of Ya'kAbt and Ibn 
Serapion. But though the relative positions of 
most of the important places are thus fixed on 
more than one authority, the actual positions on 
the modern map are still to be sought, and these 
can only be ascertained when excavations shall 
have been made, bringing to light the ruins of 
the Mosque of Mans&r in the western city, and 
of the Rus&fah Mosque on the eastern bank, with 
the great Mosque of the Sultan a mile distant from 
it Some traces of these great mosques must surely 
be extant, for they were built of kiln-burnt bricks 
or tiles, which do not quickly perish, and all three 
were still standing in the fourteenth century a.d m 
when Ibn Battitah visited Baghdad. 



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INDEX 



£. B. refers to places in Eastern Baghdad. 
W. B. refers to places in Western Baghdad. 



Abarkuh, 159. 

'Abbadan, 8. 

'Abbadf, 79. 

'Abbarat-al-Kukh, 112. 

'Abbas, brother of Mansur, 142 ; 

bridge of (W. B.), 149 ; bridge 

and ditch of (£. B.), 225. 
'Abbas, Shah of Persia, 345. 
'Abbasfyah Island, 142, 148. 
'Abd-Allah al-Ma'badi, 75. 
'Abd-Allah ibn Malik, 204. 
'Abd-Allah or 'Ubayd-Allah, son 

of the Caliph Mahdf, 218. 
'Abd-Allah, son of Ibn Hanbal and 

his tomb, 160, 165-7, 35a 
'Abd-Allah, the Alid, 205. 
'Abd-al-Kadir Gtlani, 348, 349. 
'Abd-al-Wahhab, fief, market, 

palace, and suburb, 59, 141. 
'Abd-al- Wahid, market, 59. 
'Abd-ar-Raljman of Cordova, 190. 
'Abd-as-§amad, uncle of Mansfr, 

28. 
Abna, or Persian nobles, 128. 
Abraz Gate, 17 1-6, 228, 284-8. 
Abu 'All ibn Shadhan, 182. 



Abu 'Attab, canal, 52, 61, 62 

91. 

Abu 'Awn, fief and quarter, 124. 

Abu Bakr, Mini, 345. 

Abu Hanifah, the Imam, overseer 
of works at building of Baghdad, 
17; road of (W. B.), 27; his 
tomb and quarter of (£. B.)» 
160, 190-2, 197, 280, 282, 334, 

349, 353. 
Abu-Ja'far (the Caliph Mansur), 

mill, 142. 
Abu-Ja'far az-Zammam, 191. 
Abu Kabisah Gate, 150. 
Abu-l-'Abbas, quadrangle, 126. 
Abu-1-Faraj, 338. 
Abu-1-Fida, 340. 
Abu-1-Jawn, bridge, 128, 129. 
Abu-1-Kasim, mill, 63. 
Abu-1-Khastb, the chamberlain, 

227. 
Abu-1-Ward, market, 6a 
Abu-Muslim, 127. 
Abu-n-Nadr,or Abu Nasr Hashim, 

215. 
Abu Sad of Nfshapur, 100. 



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35» 



Index 



Abu Suwayd, al Jarud, archway, 

130. 
Abu 'Ubayd, the Barmecide, 206. 
Abwab-al-IJadtd, 215. 
Abydos, 285. 
'Adud-ad-Dawlah, 103, 104, 205, 

319, 322; his palace, 234-8; 

garden and canal, 235-7 ; his 

treasurer, 259. 
'Adud-ad-Dtn, palace, 97. 
'Adudt Hospital, 45, 46, 103-5, 

342, 346. 

Ahmad ibn 'Alt, al-Khatfb Bagh- 
dad!, 323. 
Ahmad ibn al-Khasfb, 86, 223,226. 
Ahmad Ibn Hanbal and his tomb, 

112, 158, 165-7, 35o. 
Ahmad ibn Nasr, 215. 
Ahmad Jalayr, Sultan, 345. 
'Ajamt Fief, 1 16, 292, 296. 
'Ajami Tower, 292, 341-3, 
Ajurr, Darb (E. B.), 282. 
Ajurr, Darb (W. B.), 84. 
'Akd-al-Musfanf and 'Akd-az- 

Zarradtn, 284-8. 
'Akkt, arcade, 130. 
Ak-Kuyunli Dynasty, 345. 
'Akr (castle), 83. 
'All, Caliph, 2, 154, 320, 322; 

shrine of the Mintakah, 90. 
'Alt-ar-Rida, Imam, tomb, 147. 
'Alt ibn-al-Furat, 221. 
*Ali ibn Jabalah, 97. 
'Alt Muktafi, Caliph, 195, 252-4, 

260 ; his tomb, 120, 195. 
Alid insurrection at Medinah, 15. 
Alkali Bridge, 75. 
Alp Arslan, 297, 298, 322. 
Amid, 251. 
Amtn, Caliph, and the first siege 

of Baghdad, 32,33, 43, 44, in, 

112, 245, 303, 306-10 ; his kiosk 

at Kalwadha, 295, 307 ; his 

tomb, 161-5, I 94* 



'Ammar, Gate, 226, 227. 

*Ammurtyah, or Amorium, 275. 

'Amr-ar-Rumt, street, 220. 

'Amr ibn Sim'&n, 91. 

'Amud Canal, 62-4. 

Anbar Bridge, . Canal, Gate, and 

Garden, 55, 111,130-4, 307, 310. 
Anbar Road, 55, 304. 
Anbar, town, 5, 12, 73, 194. 
Anbarite Mosque, 61. 
Ancient Market, Quarter, 90. 
Angle Bastion, 292. 
Ansar Bridge and Tank, 222, 223, 

225. 
Arcades of the Round City, 25, 26, 

44. 
Arch and Archway. See also 

under Tak. 
Archway, Gate of the, 21 8. 
Archway of the Artificer and of 

the Armourer, 284-8. 
Archway of the Harranian, 90, 

91,96. 
'Artb, continuator of Tabarf, 331. 
Armour in Firdus Palace, 257. 
Armourers' Archway, 286-8. 
Armoury in the Round City, 31. 
Arrayan, Spanish for myrtle, 

271. 
Arrow-flight, distance of, 285. 
Artificer Archway, 284-6. 
Ashmuna, 209. 
'Askar-al-Mahdt (Rusafah), 42, 

189. 
Asma, palace of, 218. 
Ass, Cupola of the (E. B.), 254. 
Ass, Mound of the (W. B.), 7S. 
'Attkah Quarter, 90. 
'Attktyah Quarter, 139, 14a 
c A(sh, 'thirst,' not 'famine,' in 

name of market, 224. 
'Attab, great-grandson of Omay- 

yah, 138. 
'Attabtyah, or 'Attabtytn Quarter, 



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Index 



359 



and the 'Attabi silks, 137, 138, 

333, 336. 
'Attiriym (Perfumers), 272. 
'Awn, the Alid, his tomb, 352. 
'Ayishah Khinum, her tomb, 351. 
Azaj Gate, 285, 287, 290, 296-9. 
Azhar ibn Zuhayr, Fief of, 59. 

Bab Abraz, 17 1-6, 228, 284-8. 
Bab Abu Kabisah, 15a 
Bib-ad-Dawlah, 24. 
Bib-ad-Dawwimit, 276, 
Bib-adh-Dhahab, 31. 
Bibak, son of Bahram, 83. 
Bibak, the heretic, 237. 
Bab-al-'Ammah, 225-9, 2 74"6« 
Bib-al-Arhi (or Arji), 84, 
Bib-al-*Atabah, 274-6. 
Bib-al-Azaj, 285, 287, 290, 296-9. 
Bib-al-Badriyah, 270, 272. 
Bib-al-Basaliyah, 281, 283, 290-7. 
Bab-al-Bustan (£. B.), 276. 
Bib-al-Bustin (W. B.), no f in. 
Bib-al-Firdus, 250. 
Bib-al-Gharabah, 265, 266. 
Bab-al-Hadtd, III, 127, 128, 163, 

3", 316. 
Bab-al-Halbah, 281, 291-3, 343. 
Bab-al-Haram, 276. 
Bib-al-Hujrah, 259. 
Bib-al-Jisr, 178, 198. 
Bib-al-Karkh, 63. 
Bab-al-Katf ah (Zubaydiyah), 1 13. 
Bib-al-Khalaj, 281, 294. 
Bib-al-Khissah, 270. 
Bib-al-Khuluj, 294. 
Bib-al-Maritib, 271, 276, 277. 
Bab-al-Muazzam, 170, 192, 225, 

281, 282, 348, 352-4. 
Bib-al-Wustini, 281, 288, 348. 
Bib-al-Yasirtyah, 151. 
Bab 'Ammir, 226, 227. 
Bib 'Ammurlyah, 275. 
Bab Anbar, 55, in, 130-4,307,310. 



Bib-ash-Sha'ir (Lower), 61, 95, 

179. 
Bib-ash-Sha'ir (Upper), 139. 
Bib-ash-Shim, gate of Round 

City, 17. 
Bab-ash-Sham, village, 203. 
Bib-ash-Shammisiyah, 170-5, 

198, I99> 201, 203, 206, 219. 
Bib-ash-Sharki, 281, 294, 349. 
Bib-as-§afariyah, 288. 
Bib-as-Sul^an, 266, 281, 282, 

34i. 
Bab-at-Tak, 178, 181, 218, 320. 
Bib-at-Talism, 281, 291, 348, 349. 
Bib-at-Tibn, 115, 123, 160. 
Bab-a?-?afariyah, 281, 283, 288-95. 
Bab Baradan, 170-3, 200, 204, 

206. 
Bab Basrah, 17 ; Quarter of, 46, 

89-98, 336. 
Bab Bin, 287. 
Bab Kalwidhi, 179, 271, 281, 283, 

290-7, 342, 355. 
Bab Katfah Mushkir, 229. 
Bib Katrabbul, 113, 313. 
Bib Khurasan, of Mukharrim, 

170, 305. 
Bib Khurisin, of New Baghdad, 

281, 288. 
Bib Khurisin, of Round City, 17, 

24, 101, 105. 
Bib Kufah, 17, 59. 
Bib Muhawwal, 46, 146-9; Quar- 
ter of, 318. 
Bib Mukayyar, 224, 226. 
Bib Mukharrim, 225. 
Bib Nahhisfn or Nakhkhisin, 

68. 
Bib Nasr, 215. 
Bib Nubi, 272, 274-6. 
Bib Suk-ad-Dawwibb, 220, 227. 
Bib Suk-ath-Thalithah, 95, 

I7I-3, 179, 197, 219, 220, 228, 

266, 268, 277, 283. 



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3fr> 



Index 



Bab Sulf-at-Tamr, 265, 266. 

Bab 'Ullayan, 276. 

Badr Gate and Badriyah Market, 
270-2. 

Badr the Waztr and the Badriyah 
Mosque, 36. 

Baduraya District, 14, 50, 51, 315. 

Baghdad, advantages of site, 14 ; 
Assyrian city of this name, 9 ; 
city described by Ya'kubt and 
Ibn Serapion, 314; by Isjakhrt 
and Ibn Hawkal, 3 1 9 ; by Khatfb, 
323; by Ibn Jubayr, 332; by 
Yakut, 335 ; by author of Mara- 
sid, 344 ; by Ibn Ba(u(ah, 346 ; 
by IJamd-AUah, 347 ; by Taver- 
nier,348; by Niebuhr and Jones, 
352; Eastern and Western 
Quarters, 169; etymology of 
Baghdad, 10; orientation of, 
arbitrary, 315 ; Sassanian Bagh- 
dad, 12 ; sieges, first, 303, 306- 
10; second, 311-4; third, 327; 
fourth, 328-3°; fifth* 340-3; 
size of city, 321, 323-6; wall 
of Musta'in, 312, 318; wall of 
Mustazhir, 327. 

BaghSytn, 108. 

Baha-ad-Dm, biographer of Sala- 
din, 298. 

Bahlul Dinah, 35a 

Bajisra, 174. 

Bajkam the Turk, 155. 

Bakery, public, 31. 

Bakfr Agha, the Janissary, 345. 

Banafsah, the slave girl, 79. 

Banawari, 67. 

Bani Zurayk Bridge, 75, 76, 89. 

Banujah or Banukah Palace, 226. 

Baradan Bridge and Road, 206, 
215. 

Baradan Cemetery, 204, 205. 

Baradan Gate, 1 70-3, 200, 204, 
206. 



Baradan, town, 174. 

Baratha, 153-6; mosque, 320. 

Barimma, 9. 

Barley Gate, Lower, 61, 95, 179. 

Barley Gate, Upper, 139. 

Barley Street, 95. 

Barmak and the Barmecides, 37- 

40 ; fall of, 306; their fiefs, 200; 

and palaces, 206. 
Basaliyah Gate and Quarter, 281, 

283, 290-7. 
Basasfri, 36. 
Basil plant, 271-2. 
Basrah Gate, 17. 
Basrah Gate highroad, 75, 355. 
Basrah Gate Mosque, 332. 
Basrah Gate Quarter, 46, 89-98, 

336. 
Basrah town, 5, 16. 
Bajajiyl Canal, 55, in, 123-5, 

132, 133- 
Bafrak and Bajrfk, 145. 
Bafltkh, Dar, 85, 342. 
Bayawarf, 67. 
Bayn-al-Kasrayn, 218. 
Bayraz Gate, 287. 
Bayt-as-Sittint, 235. 
Bazzaztn Canal, 52, 53, 63, 77* 7* ; 

(lower reach), 91. 
Belvedere of Badr Gate, 273. 
Belvedere of Garden Gate, 276. 
Belvedere of Halbah Gate, 292. 
Belvedere of Mustansirtyah, 268. 
Benjamin of Tudela, 332. 
Btmaristan 'Adudf, 45, 46, 103-5, 

319, 342, 346; Market of, 105. 
Bimaristan Bridge, 62. 
Btmaristan of the Mustansirtyah, 

268. 
Btmaristan Tutusht, 296-8. 
Birds, mechanical, in gold and 

silver, 256. 
BIr Maymun, 194. 
Bishr-al-Hafi, 158. 



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Index 



361 



Bitumen used in IJammams, 224, 

335- 
Biyabraz Gate, 287. 
Black Sheep Turkoman dynasty, 

345. 
Blue tiles, 36, 79. 
Bohadin, biographer of Saladin, 

298. 
Booksellers' Market, 92. 
Bowshot, distance of a, 285. 
Bracelet Street, 108. 
Bricks, Assyrian, in Baghdad, 9. 
Bricks, size of, used by Mansur, 19. 
Bricks, Street of (£. B.), 282. 
Bricks, Street of (W. B.), 84. 
Bridge at Harba, 338. 
Bridge at Kasr Sabur, 185. 
Bridge Gate, 178, 198. 
Bridge, masonry. See Kanfarah. 
Bridge, modern, 185, 186. 
Bridge of Boats or Jisr, 42 ; Upper, 

107, i\8 t 122-6, 177-86, 198; 

Main, 102-9, 177-86, 217-20; 

Lower, 95, 177-86. 
Bridge of the Date Palms, 148. 
Bridge of the Palaces, 87, 90, 

183-6, 265. 
Bridge of the Street of Rocks, 

150. 
Bridge Works, Offices of, 108. 
Broita, 156. 

Bfllf District and Canal, 14, 50. 
Bukhariot Mosque, 134. 
Burin, wife of Mamun, 246-9. 
Burj-al-'Ajami, 292, 341-3. 
Burjulaniyah or Burjulaniytn Sub- 
urb, 108. 
Bustan-ar-Rakkah, 261. 
Bustan Bridge, 75, 76. 
Bustin liafs, 189. 
Bustan Zahir, 176, 219, 220, 232, 

238, 240. 
Butchers' Market, 77. 
Butter Bridge, 148. 



Buyid Palaces, 178, 204, 231-40, 

282, 319-22. 
Buyids, period of their supremacy, 

302, 318-22. 

Cages, Street of, 134. 

Caliphs, period of die great, 302. 

Caliphs, tombs of the Abbasid, 

193. 
Camels and elephants, 237. 
Canal. See Nahr. 
Canal-diggers' Quarter, 78. 
Canal dug by 'Adud-ad-Dawlah, 

236. 
Canal of the Palaces, 177. 
Canal of the Road, 285. 
Canals, Gate of, 294. 
Cara Capi, 294, 349. 
Catholicos, monastery of, 21a 
Catholicos or Patriarch of the 

Nestorians, 208, 213. 
Cemetery. See under Makbarah 

and Mukabir. 
Cemetery of the Convent Gate, 

98-100. 
Cemetery of the Harb Gate, 158, 

159. 
Cemetery of the Kunasah, 155. 
Cemetery of the Martyrs, 158, 

164. 
Cemetery of theStraw Gate, 160-5. 
Cemetery of the Syrian Gate, 130, 

131. 
Cemetery of Wardtyah, 287-8. 
Cemetery, Old, 153. 
Central area of Round City, 18, 

27, 28. 
ChahaT Suj Quarter, 136, 137, 

336. 
Chalk Road, 134. 
Chancery Office, 31. 
Chick-pea broth, 82. 
China, Christians in, 213/ 
Chinese goods, market of, 197. 



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362 



Index 



Christian Churches in Baghdad, 

309-212. 
Christian Quarter (E. B.), 207-10, 

214, 232. 
Christians under the Caliphate, 

207-9. 
Clay Castle, 201. 
Clepsydra or clock, 267. 
Clothes-Merchants' Canal and 

Market, 52, 53, 63, 77, 7», 9«- 
Cobblers' Market, 77. 
Conduit. See Nahr. 
Conduit of the Reed-Hut, 112. 
Conduits to Round City, 29. 
Constantine Porphyrogenitus,255. 
Convent. See Dayr. 
Convent Gate, 99. 
Convent of the Foxes, 99. 
Cooked meats, sellers of, and their 

Canal, 53, 78, 79, 81-4, 336. 
Cookmen's Quarter, 91. 
Coppersmiths' Gate, 68. 
Cotton House, 84. 
Cotton Market Palace, 265. 
Cotton-merchants' Wharf, r8i. 
Cross of the Crusaders, 274, 275. 
Ctesiphon (Madain), 37, 253, 254. 
Cupolas, Monastery of the, 11 8. 

Dabbaghtn, 156. 

Dabik embroidery, 257. 

Dajaj Canal, 53, 77, 78; lower 

reach of, 91. 
Dakfk, mistake for Rakik, 123. 
Damascus, 2-5. 

Dar-al-Amir (Buyid Palaces), 322. 
Dar-al-Bafttkh, 85, 342. 
Dar-al-Fil, 270, 271. 
Dar-al-Hasan of the Golden 

Palaces, 195. 
Dar-al-Jawz, 91. 
Dar-al-Kaftan, 35. 
Dar-al-Kazz, 137, 139. 
Dar-al-Khilafah, 233, 243, 314. 



Dar-al-Kufn (W. B.), 84. 
Dar-al-KuJuniyah (E. B.), 265. 
Dar-al-Mamlakah, 233. See 

Dar-as-Sult&n. 
Dar-al-Mudhahhabah, 195. 
Dar-ar-Rakik, 123, 124. 
Dar-ar-Rayhanfytn, 266, 271-4, 

327. 
Dar-ar-Rikham, 120. 
Dar-ar-Rum (E. B.)i 207-10 ; not 

Constantinople, 214. 
Dar-ar-Rumiym (W. B.), 149. 
Dar-ash-Shajarah, 256, 257. 
Dar-ash-ShatiWyah or ash-Shati- 

yah, 253. 
Dar-as-Saltanah (of the Taj), 253, 

262. 
Dar-as-Sayyidah, 266, 272. 
Dar-as-Sul(an, or as-Suljanfyah, 

or as-Sal(anah (Buyid Palaces), 

178, 204, 231-40, 319-22. 
Dar-at-Tawiwfs, 259. 
Dar Faraj, 201. 
Dar Ja far, 86. 
Dar Kayubah, 153. 
Dar Khatun, 265, 272. 
Dar Sa'id-al-Harashf, 221, 222. 
Dar Sa'id-al-Khajib, 129. 
Darb-al-Ajurr (E. B.), 282. 
Darb-al-Ajurr (W. B.), 84. 
Darb-al-Akfas, 134. 
Darb-al-IJijarah, 150, 151, 308. 
Darb-al-Kassartn, 134. 
Darb-al-Kayyar, 224. 
Darb-al-Lawziyah, 286. 
Darb-al-Mas'ud, 297. 
Darb-al-Munirah, 282. 
Darb-an-Nahr, 285. 
Darb-an-Nurah, 134. 
Darb-ash-Sha'ir, 95, 
Darb-aJ-TawU, 221. 
Darb-Siwar, 108. 
Darb-Sulayman, 108. 
Dargah-i-Khatun, 273. 



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Index 



363 



Darmalis Monastery, 202. 
Darrabat, 63. 
Dastabuyah melons, 258. 
Date-market, Gate and Palace, 

265, 266. 
Date-palm, Bridge of, 148. 
Date-palm plantations, 154. 
Dates in Caliph's garden, 257. 
Daud, Tank of, 223. 
Daud, uncle of Mansur, 28. 
Dawwarat-al-Himar, 78. 
Daylamite body-guard, 235. 
Daylamites. See Buyids. 
Dayr-al-'Adhara, 83. 
Dayr-al-Asiyah, 212. 
Dayr-al-Kibab, 118. 
Dayr-ar-Rum, 207-10, 214. 
Dayr AshmunA, 209. 
Dayr-ath-Tha'alib, 99, 210. 
Dayr-az-Zuraykfyah, 212. 
Dayr Darmalis, 202. 
DayrDurta, 118. 
Dayr Jathilik, 21a 
Dayr Jurjis, 210. 
Dayr Midyan, 209. 
Dayr Sabur, 210. 
Dayr Samalu, 202. 
Dayr Sarkhis, 210. 
Dayr Zandaward, 211, 296, 297. 
Degrees, Gate of, 271, 276, 277. 
Dhira\ See Ell. 
Dhu-1-Yamfnayn, 119. 
DihkAns, 128. 
Dimmima Bridge, 73. 
Ditch of Round City, 21. 
Divide, Triple, on Musa Canal, 

176, 
Dtwan-as-Sadakah, 59. 
Dtwans or State Offices, 31, 235. 
Dogs' Canal, 53, 69, 74, 78. 
Dogs' Fief, 78. 
Dole given at Abu Hanifah Shrine, 

192. 
Dome of the Ass, 260. 



Domes, the Little (Quarter of 

E. B.)> 289. See also Cupolas. 
Dried-fruit sellers, 266. 
Dromedary House, 59. 
Dujayl Canal, earlier and later, 

29, 48, 49, 53, 338. 
Dujayl highroad and its canal, 

in, 127-31. 
Dukkan-al-Abna, 127. 
Dulab-i-Bakal, 342. 
Dulib water-wheels, 190, 321. 
Dur, palaces (E. B.), 200. 
Dur, town, 174. 
Durta Monastery, 118. 
Dyke and Ditch of the Round 

City, 21. 
Dyke of Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah, 232, 

233> 2 *4t 319- 
Dyke of the Taj Palace, 254, 261. 

Eastern Gate (New Baghdad), 
281, 294, 349. 

Eastern Quarter ofWest Baghdad, 
53i 77* 90, 91. 

Elephant-house at Badr Gate, 
270, 271. 

Elephant-house in Taj Palace, 
256. 

Elephants used in Baghdad, 237. 

Ell, Hashimite, 18 ; of twenty- 
three inches, 324. 

Epitomist of Ibn Hawkal, 161. 

Epitomist of Yakut SeeMarasid. 

Euphrates, course of, during Mid- 
dle Ages, 7. 

Euphrates) waters, how used for 
irrigation, 48. 

Executions on Bridges of Boats, 
180. 

Fadl Canal, 175, 176, 200, 202, 

234. 
Fadl ibn Rabf and his Palace, 

6Z, 143, 197. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



3^4 



Index 



Fadl ibn Sahl, 245, 246. 

Fadl, the Barmecide, 20a 

Fakhri, 338, 341. 

Fam-as-Silh, 246. 

Faraj the Mamluk, 201. 

Fardah (Harbour), Lower, 51, 52, 

74, 85-8, 173, 184, 355. 
Fardah (Harbour), Upper, 50, 108, 

118, 122-6, 139, 172. 
Fardah of Ja far, 85. 
Farrashes, Fief of the, 149. 
Fa(imah, granddaughter of Malik 

Shah, 273. 
Fatimite Caliph prayed for in 

Baghdad, 36. 
Fief. See Katfah. 
Fief, Gate of the, 113. 
Fief of Dogs, 78. 
Fief of Muhajir and of Musayyib, 

59. 
Fief of Mushktr, 229, 249, 275. 
Fief of Rabf , 58, 123, 143, 197, 322. 
Fief of Rayasanah, 61, 95. 
Fief of Sharawi, 59. 
Figure of magic horseman wind- 
vane, 31. 
Figures of horsemen in Palace of 

Caliph, 257. 
Firdus, meaning of, 250. 
Firdus Palace, 171, 177, 219, 225, 

228, 229, 243, 250, 251, 257, 277, 

318. 
Fires in Baghdad (A. H. 292), 218; 

(A. H. 450), 238 ; (A. H. 440, 467, 

551), 296. 
Firewood market, 197. 
Four Markets, 136, 137, 336. 
Fowls' Canal, 53-7, 77, 78, 9*- 
Foxes, Monastery of, 99, 210. 
Freedmen's Stables, 59. 
Fruit-market, 85, 342. 
Fullers, Street of, 134. 

Garden Bridge, 75, 76. 



Garden Gate (£. B.), 276. 
Garden Gate (W. B.), 110, I II. 
Garden of ' Adud - ad - Dawlah, 

235-7. 
Garden of Hafe, 189. 
Garden of Jahir, no, in. 
Garden of the Ral&ah, 261. 
Garden. See also Bustan. 
Gate. See Bib. 
Gate of Darkness, 294. 
Gate of Degrees, 296. 
Gates of New Baghdad, 28a 
Gate of the Horse-market, 220, 

227. 
Gate of the Portico or Gallery, 296. 
Gate of the Sultan, 225. 
Gate of the Tuesday Market (E. 

B.), 95, 17 1-3, 179, 197, 219, 
220, 228, 266, 268, 277, 283. 

Gates of Palace Wall (E. B.), 265. 

Gates of the Round City, 20, 22-8; 
their orientation, 41 ; their gate- 
houses, 45. 

George, Monastery of Saint, 210. 

Gerarah, 295. 

Ghalib, market o£ 67. 

Ghalwah (arrow-flight), 285. 

Ghamish, road of, 139. 

Gharabah Gate, 265, 266. 

Gharib (or Ghurayb), 86. 

Ghizan Khan, 341. 

Ghazzali, 298. 

Ghi(rif, arcade of, 130. 

Ghulams (Pages) of the Caliph, 
26; of the Chamberlain, 123. 

Girdle, shrine of the, 9a 

Golden Palace, or Palace of the 
Golden Gate, 19, 30-3, 242-5, 

309, 3i«- 
Goldsmiths' Market, 218. 
Goldwire-drawers, 272. 
Grapes of Zandaward, 297. 
Great Road of the Mukharrim, 

219, 224, 225, 255. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



365 



Grecian windows, 25. 
Greek ambassadors from Con- 
stantine Porphyrogenkus, 22$, 

255-7, 323. 
Greek envoy, 65, 142, 144. 
Greeks, House of the (E. B.), 207. 
Greeks, House of the ( W. B.), and 

Bridge of the Greek Woman, 

149. 
Green Dome, Palace of the, 31-3. 
Green Domes over gateways of 

Round City, 24. 
Gustdak, history, 347. 

Habl, (cord) measure, 326. 

Had!, Caliph, tomb, 193, 194. 

Hafs, garden of, 189. 

Hafs ibn 'Othman, palace, 108. 

9ajjaj-al-Wastf, 226. 

Hajjaj, Viceroy of 'Irak, 20. 

Halaj for Khalaj, 294. 

Halbah Gate, 281, 291-3, 343. 

Halbah or polo-ground, 292* 

Hall of the Sultanate, 262. 

Hall of the Wazirs, 259. 

Hallij, tomb of, 160. 

Halls of the Rayhanfytn, 273. 

Hamd-Auah Mustawft, 347. 

Hamdunah, 201. 

Hant, Road and Palace of, 132. 

Hannah Suburb (W. B.), 117. 

Haramayn or Harim, Palace Pre* 

cincts (E. B.), 263, 314, 319, 

331 ; sixe of; 334. 
Harashi, 222. 

Harb Gate and Bridge, 112. 
Harb Gate Cemetery, 112,158,159. 
Harb Gate Road and Canal, 124, 

126. 
Ilarb ibn 'Abd Allah, 108, 109. 
Harb Quarter or Harbiyah, 107- 

28, 305, 333, 335 J later, and its 

mosque, 125; canals of, 49, 

53-6. 



Harba Bridge, 338. 

Harbour, Lower, 51, 52, 74, 85-8, 

172, 184, 355. 
Harbour, Upper, 50, 108, 118, 

122-6, 139, 172. 
Harim. See Haramayn. 
Harim of Taliir, 119-21, 327; 

tombs here, 195. 
Harithtyah, 210. 
Harranl Archway, 90, 91, 96. 
Harthamah, 43, 307-10. 
Harun-ar-Rashid, 32, 34, 202, 218, 

243-5, 305, 306, 350 5 his tomb, 

147, 194. 
Harurt rebels, 154. 
Hasan Buzurg, 345. 
Qasan ibn Kahfabah, suburb, 

140. 
Hasan ibn Sahl, 96, 243*6, 

250. 
Hasarri Palace, 171, 228, 229,250, 

264, 266, 275, 277, 318. 
Hashimlyah, 5, 6. 
IJattfn battle, 274. 
Hawanit-al-'Allafm, 225. 
Hawd Ansar, Daud, and Hay- 
lanah, 223. 
Hawd'Atik, 150. 
Hawr (Lagoon), 8. 
Haylanah Suburb (W. B.), 1464 
Haylanah Tank (E. B.), 223. 
Haymarket, 225. 
Haytham, market, 136. 
Helena (Haylanah), 146, 223. 
Hellespont, 285. 
Helpers (the Ansar), 222, 223. 
Hilal ibn Muhsin, 182. 
Hillah, bridge of boats at, 185. 
IJirah,5. 
History of Baghdad by Khatfb, 

323. 
Horse-gallop (distance), 285. 
Horse Guards Barracks, 23, 26, 

27, 30. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



366 



Index 



Horseman, magic (wind-vane), 3 1 . 
Horse Market, 227. 
Horse Market Gate, 220. 
Horsemen, figures of, in Caliph's 

Palace, 357. 
Hospital, Buyid fAdudS), 45, 46, 

103-5, 319, 342, 346. 
Hospital, Market of the, 105. 
Hospital of the Mustansixfyah, 

268. 
Hospital, Old (W. B.), and Bridge, 

62. 
Hospital, Tutushi, 296-8. 
House. See Dar and Kasr. 
Hujrah, or Halls of the Rayhant- 

yin, 273. 
Hulagu, 105, 185, 193, 252, 293, 

340-3- 
Jiumayd ibn 'Abd - al - Hamid 

Palace, 95, 96, 137- 
Humayd ibn Kahfabah, 15, 16, 

140, 147, 148. 
JJusayn Pasha, 351, 352. 
Hu^amiyah, 206. 
Hyaena Gate, 276. 

Ibn Abi 'Awn, palace and road, 

124. 
Ibn Abi Daud, Wazfr, 189. 
Ibn Abi Maryam, 141. 
Ibn-al-Athlr, 331, 340. 
Ibn-al-Furat the historian, 343. 
Ibn-al-Furat, Waztr, Palace of, 

221. 
Ibn-al-Khasfb, palace, 86, 223, 

226. 
Ibn-al-Muftalib, mosque, 87. 
Ibn Ba$ufah, 346. 
Ibn Hanbal, tomb, 112, 158, 165-7, 

35<5. 
Ibn Hawkal, 3 19-22 ; his epitomist, 

161. 
Ibn Hubayrah, town and castle, 6. 
Ibn Ishak, tomb, 193. 



Ibn JubayT, 332-5; mistake in 

text, 88. 
Ibn Khallikan, 338. 
Ibn Malik, 204. 
Ibn Muklah, 22a 
Ibn Raghban, mosque, 61, 95. 
Ibn Raztn Quarter, 285. 
Ibn Rustah, 314. 
Ibn Sahl, 245. 
IbnSerapion,47,303,3i4; mistake 

about canals, 175. 
Ibrahim, the Alid pretender, 16. 
Ibrahim-al-Harbf, tomb, 133. 
Ibrahim, Caliph, uncle of Mamun, 

96. 

Ibrahim ibn Dhakwin, 91. 
fl-Khan dynasty, 345. 
'Imad-ad-Din, 33a 
Inscription in Bektish Takiyah, 

35a 
Inscription in Mosque of Mansur, 

35- 

Inscription of the Mustansiriyah 
College and Mosque, 269. 

Inscription on false Tomb of 
Zubaydah, 351. 

Inscription on Halbah Gate, 291. 

Insurrections in Baghdad : (in A. H. 
406, 422, and 447), 95 ; (in A.H, 
443), 163, 164; (in A.H. 488), 
84. 

Inundation of Tigris (in A.H. 330), 
44 ; (in A.H. 466), 104, 159, 233, 
251,254,283; (inA.H.554),i04, 
1 59, 234, 286, 291 ; (in a.h. 604), 
295; (in A. H. 614), 89, 97, 121, 
159; in time of Musta'sim, 46. 

Iron Gate, its Road and Bridge 
(W.B.), in, 127, 128, 312, 316; 
garden at, 163. 

Iron Gates (E. B.), 207, 215. 

Iron gates of Wall of Round City, 
20, 21. 

'tsabad, 194. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



367 



'Isa Canal, 5, 44, 49-56, 81-94, 

I5i~3, 156, 157, 321, 355; its 

bridges, 71-6. 
'tsa ibn Maryam (Jesus son of 

Mary), 73. 
'tsa, nephew of Caliph Mansur, 

16, 69, 72. 
'tsa, son of Ja'far, 85, 86. 
'tsa, uncle of Caliph Mansur, 28, 

69, 72, 143 ; his palace and 

fief, 146. 
Isfahan, 195. 
Ishak ibn Ibrahim, the T^hirid, 

119. 
Ishak of Mosul, 61. 
Ishakiyah Canal, 48. 
Ismail I, Shah of Persia, 345. 
Isfabl-al-Mawli, 59. 
Isfakhri, 319-22. 
Itakh the Turk, 226. 
'Izz-ad-Dawlah, 234. 

Jabal Hamrin, 9. 

Jacobite Christians in Baghdad, 

207 ; their church (E. B.), 209. 
Jadid for Hadid, in. 
Ja'far, market, 200, 201. 
Ja'far, son or grandson of Mansur, 

86, 109, 114. 
Ja'far the Barmecide, 180, 200, 

243-5, 3o6. 
Ja'far-al-Akbar, son of Caliph 

Mansur, 160, 164. 
Ja'fari Canal, 175. 
Ja'fart Palace, 243-5. 
Jalal-ad-Dawlah, 161-4, 238. 
Jalayr dynasty, 345. 
Jami'-al-Kasr, 243, 252, 253, 269, 

278, 317, 320, 324, 338, 343. 
Jami'-al-Ka$fah, 115, 116. 
Jami'-al-Mahdi, Rusafah, 188, 196, 

280, 346, 354, 356. 
Jamf- as -Sultan, 240, 282, 326, 

339, 346. 



Jami* of the Round City (Mosque 

of Mansur), afterwards called 

the Jami' of the Basrah Gate, 

i9,3<>,33-7,346,356. 
Jami' or Great Mosque for the 

Friday prayers, 125, and see 

under Mosque. 
Janah, a belvedere, 32. 
Jarib, measure, 324. 
Jarjaraya, 9. 

Jathilik, monastery of, 210. 
Jathilik or Catholicos of the 

Nestorians, 208. 
JawsakMuhdith(NewKiosk),257. 
Jawz, Dar, 91. 
Jawz for Jawn, 129. 
Jazzartn (butchers), 77. 
Jews' Bridge and Fief, 150. 
Jisr or Bridge of Boats (q. v.), 177. 
Jones, Commander F., 349. 
Judge's Garden Quarter, 287-9. 
Juhayr Garden Quarter, 296. 
Junayd, tomb, 79. 
Jurjis (Saint George) Monastery, 

210. 

Ka'b, house of, 77. 

Kabr-an-Nudhur, 205. 

Kabsh-wa-1-Asad Quarter, in, 
133. 

Kadir, Caliph, 125. 

Kadiriyah Dervishes, 348. 

Kahir, Caliph, 231 ; his tomb, 
'95 J garden of, 258. 

Kahtabah family, 16. 

Kah{abah Road, 140, 141. 

Kaim, Caliph, 99; his daughter 
marries Tughril Beg, 239. 

Kal'ah (castle) in Western Bagh- 
dad, 342. 

Kallayin Canal and Quarter, 53, 
78, 79, 8i-4, 336. 

Kallayin or Kallitin Canal of 
Zubaydiyah, 116. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



368 



Index 



Kalwadha Gate (E. B.), 179, 271, 

281, 283, 290-7, 342, 355- 
Kalwadha Rakkah, palace, 295, 

3<>7. 
Kalwadha Town and District, 14, 

50, 175, 293-7; mosque, 32a 
Kanat (watercourse), 56. 
Kan(arah, a masonry bridge, 56, 

177. 
Kanfarah Abu-1-Jawn, 128, 129. 
Kantarah-al-'Abbas (£. B.), 225. 
Kantarah-al-'Abbas (W. B.), 149- 
Kan$arah-al-Ansar, 222. 
Kanjarah-al-'Atikah, 50,54,60,93. 
Kanfarah-al-Bustan, 75, 76. 
Kan(arah-al-Jadidah or al-Hadi- 

thah, 52, 91-3. 
Kantarah-al-Ma'badi, 75. 
Kantarah-al-Maghtd, 75, 84. 
Kantarah-al-Muhaddithin, 76. 
Kantarah-al-Ushnan, 75. 
Kantarah-al-Yahud, 150. 
Kantarah-al-Y^siriyah, 74, 76, 151, 

153, 313. 321. 
Kanfarah-ar-Rumtyah, 149. 
Kanterah-ar-Rumman, 75. 
Kantarah-ash-Shawk, 53, 74-9. 
Kan(arah-as-Stntyat, 148. 
Kanfarah-at-Tabbantn, 124, 126. 
Kanfarah-az-Zayyattn, 74-6. 
KanJarah-az-Zubd, 148. 
Kanfarah Bani Zurayk, 75, 76, 89. 
Kanfarah Baradan, 206, 215. 
Kanfarah Btmaristan, 62. 
Kanjarah Darb-al-Hijarah, 150. 
Kantarah Dimmima, 73. 
Kan^arah Ruha-al-Bafrik, 148. 
Kanfarah Ruha Umm-Ja'far, 113. 
Karah Abu-sh-Shahm, 289. 
Karah-al-K4df, 287-9. 
Karah Ibn Razin, 285. 
Karah Juhayr, 296. 
Karah, meaning garden, 286. 
Karah-Jafar, 288. 



Kara-KuyunU dynasty, 345. 

KarafiJik or Karolog Kapi, 294. 

Karar Palace, 102. 

Karchiaka, 66. 

Karkh Gate, 63. 

Karkh, meaning of, 63 ; name for 
Western Baghdad, 32a 

Karkh Suburb, inner and outer, 
46, 63, 77, 3<>4> 336 ; its canals, 
52-6 ; limit of, position, and size, 
64, 83, 84 ; markets of, 65-8 ; 
these removed to Eastern 
Baghdad, 222. 

Karkhaya Canal, 29, 52-6, 67-80, 

149-53, 336. 
Kasr. See Palace. 
Kasr-al-Kamil, 253. 
Kasr-al-Khuld, 32, 95, 101-5, 242, 

243, *45> 305, 308, 318. 
Kasr-ath-Thurayya, 176, 227, 250, 

251, 307. 

Kasr-at-Taj (earlier), 39, 171, 228, 
229, 243, 250-6, 318 ; garden, 
258; great hall, 259; palace 
burnt, 260. 

Kasr-at-Taj (later), 261, 278, 327. 

Kasr-at-Tin, 201. 

Kasr Firdus, 171, 177, 219, 225, 
228, 229, 243, 250, 251, 257, 
*77t 3*8. 

Kasr Humayd, 95, 96, 137. 

Kasr 'Isa, 86, 87, 185 ; and Quar- 
ter, 94, 195. 

Kasr Ja'farf, 243-5. 

Kasr Mahdi (Rusafah), 42, 170, 

189, 196, 305- 
Kasr Maydan Khalis, 296, 297. 
Kasr Rakkah Kalwadha, 295. 
Kasr Sabur, 185. 
Kasr Umm Habtb, 197. 
Kasr Umm Ja'far, 103. 
Kasr Waddah (E. B.), 198. 
Kasr Waddah (W. B.), 58, 92, 
Kass or Kuss, garden, 132. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



3^9 



Katf'ah-al-'Ajamt, Fief and Quar- 
ter, 116, 292, 296. 

Katfah-al-Farrashin, 149. 

Kajfah-al-KilAb, 78. 

Katfah-an-Nasara, 82. 

Katf* ah Muhajir, 59. 

Kaffah Mushktr, 229. 

Katfah of Zabaydah, 54, 1 13-7, 
124. 

Katfah or Fief, Quarters in W. B. 
and in £. B., 1 16. 

Katrabbul Bridge, 113-5, I2 3« 

Katrabbul District, 14, 50-51, 

"3,315. 
Kafrabbul Gate, 113, 313. 
Kaftan, Dar, 35. 
Ka|ul Nahrawan Canal, 48. 
Ka'yubah, the gardener, 153. 
Kazim, Imam, 161. 
Kazimayn shrines, 158-65, 334, 

342, 343, 35o, 351- 
Kazz, Dar, 137, 139. 
Khadarfyfn, 197. 
Khafkah, 63. 
Khakant, 321. 
Khalaj (or Khuluj) Gate, 281, 

294. 
Khalaj Turks and the Khiljt 

Sultans, 294. 
Khalid, general, 12. 
Khalid ibn Barmak, 37-40, 200. 
Khalid, Market, 201. 
Khalfj or Canal, 294. 
Khalis, 174-6, 236, 287. 
Khamartakfn, 298. 
Khan-al-Khayl, 255. 
Khan-an-Najaib, 59. 
Khan 'Asim, 272. 
Khandak, of Round City, 21. 
Khandak Tahir, 51, 52, 54-6, 

110-28,355. 
Khankah (Dervish convent) in 

Tuthah, 79. 
Kharrazfn (cobblers), 77 

BAGHDAD B 



Khatfb, his history of Baghdad, 
323-6. 

Khaftabiyah, 134. 

Khatun, Dar, 265, 272. 

Khawr, 236. 

Khayzuran Cemetery, 191-3, 226 ; 
confused with Kuraysh Ceme- 
tery, 193. 

Khayzuran, wife of Caliph Mahdi, 
192, 204. 

Khilafah, D&r, 233, 243, 314. 

Khudayr Market and Mosque, 
Khudayrfyah or Khadarfyin, 

173,197,198. 
Khuld Gardens, 50. 
Khuld Palace, 32, qfr 101-5, 242, 

243, 245, 305, 308, 318. 
Khuld, square of, 200. 
Khurasan Gate of East Baghdad, 

170, 305. 
Khurasan Gate of New Baghdad, 

281, 288. 
Khurasan Gate of Round City, 

17, 24, 101, 105. 
Khurasan Merchants 9 Quarter, 77. 
Khurasan Road, 217, 218. 
Khuwarizmian Suburb, 128. 
Khuzaymah ibn Khazim, 218. 
Kil&b (Dogs') Canal, 53, 69, 74, 78. 
Kilab (Dogs') Fief, 78. 
Kfr or bitumen, 224. 
KitAb-ad-Diy&r&t, 211. 
KitAb-al-Fihristy 213. 
Kiwi Rumiyah, 25. 
Kubaybat Quarter, 289. 
Kubbat-al-Himar, 254. 
Kubbat-al-Khadra Palace, 31. 
Kubbra, 44, 46. 

Kufah Gate of Round City, 17. 
Kufah Gate Road, 57-80, 304, 

355. 
Kufah Gate Square, 58, 59. 
Kufah, town, 2, 5, 16. 
Kufic inscription (of A. H. 333), 350. 
b 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



37° 



Index 



Kunasah Quarter, 150-3, 308. 
Kurah Canal, 233, 234. 
Kuraysh Cemetery, 158; confused 

with that of Khayzuran, 193. 
Kurayyah Quarter (E. B.), 87-89, 

297, 299, 355- 
Kurayyah Quarter (W. B.), 333- 
Kurij Canal, 233, 234, 251, 284. 
Kurn-as-Sarat, 101. 
Kurnah, 8, 9. 
Kurr, measure, 82. 
Kuf-al-'Amarah, 8. 
Kutha Canal, 49. 
Kufn, Dar, 84. 
Kuttab-al-Yatama, 129. 
Kujufta Suburb, 89, 94, 97, 98. 
Kujuntyah, Dar, 265. 

Lake of Firdus Palace, 250. 
Lapislazuli tiles, 36. 
Law-schools of the Mustansirtyah, 

267-9. 
Layth the Saffarid, 237. 
Leopards, hunting-, 256. 
Library of the Mustansirtyah, 

267. 
Library of the Rayhantytn, 273. 
Lions, tame, 256. 
Long Street, 221. 
Lower Bridge, 95, 177-86. 

Maazan Capi, 348, 352-4. 
Mabadl Bridge, 75. 
Mabkalah, 342. 
Madain (Ctesiphon) Palace, 37, 

253, 254. 
Madharaya, 174. 

Madtnat-as-Salam (Baghdad), 10. 
Madrasah-al-Mustansirtyah, 266- 

70, 278, 299, 337, 346, 349- 
Madrasah-an-Nizamtyah, 88, 267, 

296-300, 326, 355- 
Madrasah-at-Tajtyah, 288. 



Maghdad, Maghdan, &c, names 

for Baghdad, 10. 
Maghtd Bridge, 75» 84. 
Magian Cemetery, 193. 
Mahdt, Caliph, 28, 42, 92, 143, 222, 

226 ; his tomb, 193, 194. 
Mahdt Canal, 175, 176, 202, 206. 
Mahdt Mosque and Palace, 42, 

170, 189, 196, 305. 
Mahmud, Saljuk Sultan, 275. 
Main Bridge, 102-9, 177-86, 217- 

20. 
Majlis-ash-Shuara, 218. 
Makbarah Bab-ad-Dayr, 98-100. 
Makbarah Kadimah, 153. 
Malik Canal, 49. 

Malik Shah, 100, 159, 162, 191, 239, 
240, 288, 292, 298, 322, 326, 339, 
340 ; his granddaughter, 273. 
Maliktyah Cemetery, 204, 327. 
Mamlakah, Dar, 233. See also 

Buyid Palaces. 
Mamun, Caliph, 43, 103,237, 303, 

306-10 ; his tomb, 195. 
Mamunt Palace, 243-5. 
MamuntyahQuarter,245,276, 284, 

285, 290-3, 296-9, 297, 343. 
Manjantk (catapults), 307, 313. 
Mansur, Caliph, 4, 5, 9, 24, 38, 
41, 65, 77 j 102, 237, 303; his 
tomb, 194. 
Mansur ibn 'Ammar, 158. 
Mansur Rashid, Caliph, 120, 204, 

327 ; his tomb, 195. 
Manzarah of Badr Gate, 273. 
Manzarah of Garden Gate, 276. 
Manzarah of Halbah Gate, 292. 
Manzarah of Mustansirtyah, 268. 
Maraghah, 195. 

Mar&sid-al-IttiUt, author of, 344 ; 
mistakes in, 134, 271, 286. 
, Marawizah Suburb, 128. 
Marble House of Jahirid IJartm, 
120. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



37i 



Marco Polo, 343, 346. 
Maristan for Bimaristan, 62. 
Market. See Suk and Suwaykah. 
Market of 'Abd-al-Wahhab, 141. 
Market of Badr, 270, 272. 
Market of Satiety, 222. 
Market of the Nizamfyah, 299. 
Market of the Perfumers, 271-3. 
Market of the Syrian Gate, 129, 

130. 
Markets of the Round City, 26. 
Maruf Karkhi, tomb, 79, 97-100, 

334, 3SO-2. 
Marv. See Merv. 
Marv-ar-Rudb, 126. 
Marwan II, Caliph, 4. 
Masanneh or dyke, 281. See 

Musannat 
Mashhad. See Meshed. 
Mashhad 'AW, 322. 
Mashhad-al-Min$akah, 90, 96. 
Mashra'ah, meaning wharf, 85. 
Mashra'at-al-As, 85. 
Mashraat-al-Haftalrfn, 181. 
Mashra'at-al-Ibriyra, 265, 266. 
Mashraat-al-Kattanin, 181. 
Mashraat-ar-Rawaya, 181. 
Mashra'at, of the Khuld, 102. 
Mashra'at, of the Nizimtyah, 299. 
Masjid. See Mosque. 
Maskfn District, 49. 
Maskin, Prince Salih al-, 108. 
Mas'ud, Sultan, 204, 327. 
Mas'udah Quarter, 296, 297. 
Mas'udi, the historian, 316. 
Matbak Prison, 27. 
Mayd&n of Mamuni Palace, 244, 

250. 
Maydavn of Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah, 181. 
Mayd&n of Rusifah, 197. 
Mayd&n of Sabuktagin, 235, 236. 
Maydin Quarter and Palace, 296, 

297. 
Maymuniyah for Mamun!yah,343. 

h 



Mazrafah, 210. 

Meadows of Gold, history by 

Mas'ud!, 316. 
Mecca, 1, 2. 
Medina, 1, 2, 15. 
Melon House or Fruit Market, 85, 

342. 
Melons, called Dastabuyah, 258. 
Merv, Suburb of Men of (W. B.), 

128. See Marv. 
Meshed in Khur&s&n, 147, 194. 

See Mashhad. 
MiklAs, 13. 
Mills, Bridge of the Patrician's, 

148. 
Mills, Gate of the, 84. 
Mills of the Patrician, 142-4,308. 
Mills of Zubaydah, 113. 
Minaret, Green, of Bukhariot 

Mosque, B34. 
Minaret of Humayd, 137. 
Minaret, Tall, in Mosque of Mu- 

sayyib, 59. 
Mintakah Shrine, 90, 96. 
Monasteries (Christian) in East 

and West Baghdad, 210-12. 
Monastery. See Dayr. 
Money-changers' Market, 272. 
Mongol siege of Baghdad^ 292, 

302, 340-3. 
Mosque. See J ami'. 
Mosque of Bar&th&, 154-6, 320. 
Mosque of Ibn-al-Muttalib, 87. 
Mosque of Ibn Raghban, 61, 95. 
Mosque of KalwAdh&, 320. 
Mosque of Khudayr, 197. 
Mosque of Rusafah, 188, 196, 280, 

346, 354, 356. 
Mosque of the Caliph or of the 

Palace (E. B.), 243, 252, 253, 269, 

278, 317, 320, 324, 338, 343- 
Mosque of the Harb Gate, 125. 
Mosque of the Round City or of 

Mansur, 19, 30, 33~7, 346, 356. 
b2 



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372 



Index 



Mosque of the Sultan, 240, 282, 

326, 339, 346. 
Mosque of the Zubaydiyah Fief, 

115, 116. 
Mosques, Friday, of Baghdad in 

the time of Istakhri and Ibn 

Hawkal, 320; in the time of 

Khatib, 324 ; in the time of Ibn 

Jubayr, 334. 
Mosul, 9. 

Mound of the Ass, 78. 
Mu'alla and the Mu'alla Canal, 

176, 228, 244, 250, 282-7. 
Mu'alla Canal Quarter, or New 

Baghdad, 280. 
Mu'awiyah, Caliph, 2. 
Mu'azzam Gate and Shrine (Abu 

Hanifah), 170, 192, 225,281, 282, 

348, 352-4. 
Muhaddithin Bridge, 76. 
Muhajir Fief, 59. 
Muhammad-at-Taki or al-Jawar, 

the Imam, 161-4. 
Muhammad-az-Zayyat, Wazir, 75. 
Muhammad ibn 'Abd- Allah, the 

Tahirid, 119,311-3. 
Muhammad ibn Abu 'Awn, 125. 
Muhammad ibn Zakartya-ar-Razf, 

the physician, 62. 
Muhammad Mulct afi, Caliph, 260, 

273, 294, 328-30. 
Muhammad, the Saljuk Sultan, 

328-30. 
Muhammad the Alid, 15. 
Muhammad, the Prophet, vision 

of, and mark of his hand, 116. 
Muhawwal Gate and Quarter, 46, 

146-9, 318. 
Muhawwal, meaning of, 73. 
Muhawwal town and road, 50, 60, 

69, 74, 146-57, 304. 
Mu in, the Alid, his tomb, 352. 
Mu'izz-ad-Dawlah, 231-3, 302, 

318, 319; his tomb, 161-4. 



Mu'izziyah Dyke, 232, 233, 284, 

319. 
Mukabir-ash-Shuhada, 158, 164. 
Mukabir Bab-at-Tibn, 160-5. 
Mukaddasi, 319-22. 
Mukanna', the Veiled Prophet of 

Khurasan, 222. 
Mukatil-al-'Akkl, 130. 
Mukharrim, 219. 
Mukharrim Gate, 225. 
Mukharrim Quarter, 169-76, 217- 

230, 305. 
Mukhtarah Quarter, 287. 
Muktadf, Caliph, 283, 292, 293, 

326. 
Muktadir, Caliph, 115, 154, 231, 

323 ; death of and burial-place, 

120, 195, 206; receives the 

Greek envoy, 255-7. 
Muktadiriyah, mistake for Mukta- 

diyah, 286. 
Muktadiyah Quarter, 283-6. 
Muktafl and Muktafi, Caliphs, 

260. See also under 'AH and 

Muhammad. 
Mules and elephants, 237. 
Munis, Palace of, 206, 231, 232. 
Murabba'ah Abu-l- f Abbas, 126. 
Murabba'ah-al-Furs, 127, 128. 
Murabba'ah-az-Zayyat, 78. 
Murabba'ah Said, 221, 222. 
Murabba'ah Salih, 81. 
Murabba'ah Shabtb, 126, 129, 

130- 
Murabba'ah, Square Palace, 259. 
Murad IV, Sultan, 291, 346, 348. 
Musa-al-Kazim, the Imam, tomb 

of, 161, 334. 
Musi Canal, 176, 177, 219-229, 

287. 
M(isa,son of the Caliph Amfn,3o6. 
Musalla, Chapel of Vows, 204. 
Musannat-al-Mu'izziyah, 233. 
Musawwir Road, 77. 



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Index 



373 



Musayyib Fief, 59. 

Mushajin for Mushjir or Mushkir, 

Fief of, 229, 249, 275. 
Mustadi, Caliph, 260, 280; his 

tomb, 87, 195. 
Musta'in, Caliph, 113, 119, 171-3, 

203, 204, 247, 3 11 -4 ; his tomb, 

195. 
Mustakfi, Caliph, 118, 231; his 

tomb, 194, 195. 
Mu stan sir, Caliph, 337, 338 ; his 

tomb, 194, 195. 
Mustansiriyah College, 266-70, 

278, 299, 337, 346, 349. 
Mustansiriyah Mosque, 269, 278. 
Mustarshid, Caliph, 259, 275 ; his 

tomb, 195. 
Musta'sim, Caliph, 273, 293, 342, 

343 ; his tomb and that of his 

daughter, 195. 
Mustazhir, Caliph, 272, 273, 279, 

283, 284, 323, 327, 335. 
Mu'tadid, Caliph, 18, 35, 180, 225, 

229, 248-52, 314 ; his tomb, 120, 

194, 195. 
Mu tamid, Caliph, 193, 194, 229, 

247-9; his tomb, 195. 
Mutasim, Caliph, 13, 157, 189, 221, 

246, 247, 275, 310, 311; his 

tomb, 193, 194. 
Mutazz, Caliph, 171, 247, 31 1-3. 
Muthammanah, Octagon Palace, 

259. 
Muff , Caliph, 259. 
Muttaki, Caliph, 156; his tomb, 

195. 
Muwaffak, 247, 248, 325. 
Myrtle or Rayhan, 271. 
Myrtle Wharf, 85. 

Nabawarf for Banawarf, 68. 
Nahhasm Gate, 68. 
Nahr (watercourse, canal, or 
river), 56, 294. 



Nahr Abu 'Attab, 52, 61, 62, 91. 
Nahrawan Canal, 48, 174. 
Nahrawan, town, 217, 307. 
Nahr Bafa$iya, 55, 1 1 1, 123-5, 132, 

133. 
Nahr Bazzazin, 52, 53, 63, 77, 78, 91 . 
Nahr Bin or Nahrabin, 174-6, 

287, 307. 
Nahr Buk District, 14, 50. 
Nahr Dajaj, 53, 77> 7&, 9*- 
Nahr Fadl, 175, 176, 200, 202, 234. 
Nahr 'tsa, 5, 44, 49-56, 81-94, 

I5I-3, 156,157,321,355; bridges 

of, 71-6. 
Nahr Ishakiyah, 48. 
Nahr Ja'fari or Ja'fariyah, 175. 
Nahr Kallayin, 53, 78, 79, 81-4, 

336. 
Nahr Karkhaya, 29, 52-6, 67-80, 

149-53, 336. 
Nahr Kilab, 53, 69, 74, 78. 
Nahr Kutha, 49. 
Nahr Mahdt, 175, 176, 202, 206. 
Nahr Malik, 49. 
Nahr Mualla, 176, 228, 244, 250, 

282-7. 
Nahr Musa, 176, 177, 219-29, 287. 
Nahr Razin, 52, 54. 
Nahr Rufayl, 71. 
Nahr Sarat (Great), 9, 14, 15, 

5o-4, 73, 91-101, 148, 149, 315, 

355. 
Nahr Sarat (Little), 51, no, 134, 

141, 142, 148, 149- 
Nahr Sarsar, 49. 
Najran, Monk of, 213. 
Nakhkhasin Gate, 68. 
Nasir, Caliph, 240, 273-5, 279-81, 

291, 295, 333, 335 ; death of his 

son, 100. 
Nasr ibn f Abd- Allah, 137. 
Nasr ibn Malik, Market and 

Gate, 207,214,215. 
Nasrtyah Quarter, 137. 



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374 



Index 



Nebuchadnezzar, bricks of, 9. 
Needle-makers' Wharf, 265, 266. 
Nestorian Christians, 207, 208. 
Nestorian Church of the Virgins, 

82. 
Nestorian Churches in Baghdad, 

209-12. 
Nestorian Monks, 12, 13 ; sent to 

China, 213. 
New Archway, 286. 
New Bridge, 52, 91-3. 
New Moslems, 3. 
Niebuhr, Carstein, 349. 
Nizam-al-Mulk, Wazir, 100, 159, 

162, 239, 296-300, 326. 
Nizamfyah College, Market, and 

Wharf, 88, 267, 296-300, 326, 

355. 
Nubian Gate, 272, 274-6. 
Nut-house, 91. 
Nut-market Street, 286. 
Kushctf-al-Kul&by geography, 

347. 

Octagon Palace, 259. 
Oil-merchants' Bridge, 74-6. 
Oil-merchants' Quadrangle, 78. 
Old Bridge, 50, 54, 60, 93. 
Old Cemetery, 153. 
Old Tank, 150. 
'Omar, Caliph, 71. 
'Omar Khayyam, 298. 
Omayyads, 3, 4. 
Orientation of Baghdad, 315. 
Orientation of Gates of the Round 

City, 41. 
Orientation of Mosque of Mansur, 

34. 
Orphan School, 129. 
'Othman ibn Nuhayk Suburb, 128. 

Pages (Ghulam) of the Caliph, 26; 

of the Chamberlain, 123. 
Painter, Road of the, 77. 



Palace. See under Dar and Kasr. 
Palace Bridge, 87, 183-6, 265. 
Palace Mosque, 243, 252, 253, 269, 

278, 317, 320, 324, 338, 343; 

square of, 272, 284. 
Palace of 'Adud-ad-Dawlah, 

234-8. 
Palace of 'Adud-ad-Dln, 97. 
Palace of Asma, 218. 
Palace of Hani, 132. 
Palace of Ibn-al-Furat, 221. 
Palace of Ibn-al-Khastb, 86, 223, 

226. 
Palace of Ibn Muklah, 220. 
Palace of Khuzaymah, 218. 
Palace of Mu'tasim, 221. 
Palace of Peacocks, 259. 
Palace of Perfection, 253. 
Palace of Sa c id-al-Harashi, 221, 

222. 
Palace of Said-al-Khatib, 129. 
Palace of the Chosroes (Ctesi- 

phon), 37, 253, 254. 
Palace of the Cotton Market, 265. 
Palace of the Date Market, 266. 
Palace of the Golden Gate, 19, 

30-3, 242-5, 309, 318. 
Palace of the Green Dome, 31-3. 
Palace of the Lady, 273. 
Palace of the May din Khalis, 297. 
Palace of the New Kiosk, 257. 
Palaces of the Princess, 266, 272. 
Palace of the Sultan (Buyid and 

Saljuk), 178, 204, 231-40, 282, 

319-23, 326, 328-30. 
Palace of the Tree, 256-8. 
Palace of 'Ubayd Allah, 218. 
Palace of 'Umarah, 227. 
Palaces of the Caliphs (£. B.), 

extent of, 259, 263, 265 ; gates 

of, 265. 
Palaces of younger sons of Caliph 

Mansur, 31. 
Palm-basket weavers, 272. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



375 



Palm-trees in Caliph's garden, 

257. 
Papak (or Babak), 83. 
Paper-makers, 137. 
Paper-sellers' Market, 92. 
Uapddfuros, 25a 
Patriarch, Nestorian, 208. 
Patriarch or Patrician, 145. 
Patrician, Mill of the, 142-4, 308. 
Patrician, sent by Greek Emperor, 

his remarks on Karkh, 65. 
Pay Office, 31. 
Peacock Palace, 259. 
Perfumers' Market, 271-3. 
Periods, five, of Abbasid history, 

301. 
Persian Fief Quarter (E. B.), 116, 

292, 296. 
Persian Tower (E. B.), 292, 341-3. 
Persians, House of the (W.B.), 

150. 
Persians' Quadrangle and Suburb 

(W. B.), 127, 128. 
Pharos of Alexandria, 285. 
Pilgrim road to Mecca, 57. 
Pitched Gate, 224-6. 
Pitch-workers' Street (E. B.), 224. 
Pitch-workers' Street (W. B.), 78, 

91. 
Place of Sacrifice, 276. 
Place of Vows, 205. 
Pleiades Palace, 176, 227, 250, 

251, 307. 
Poets' Assembly Hall, 218. 
Police, chief of Baghdad, 31, 

106. 
Polo Ground, 292. 
Polo (Suljan), 244. 
Pomegranate Bridge, 75. 
Pool ofZalzal, 52,61. 
Poor Tax, Office of, 59. 
Porcelain Bridge, 148. 
Porte Muree, 292, 348. 
Porte Noire, 294. 



Poulterers' Canal and Quarter, 53, 

77, 78, 91. 
Princess, Palace of the, 266, 272. 
Prison of the Mafbak, 27. 
Prison of the Syrian Gate, 1 30, 13 1 . 
Prison, State, for Abbasid princes, 

258. 
Privy Chamber Gate, Hall of, 259. 
Privy Gate, 270. 
Professor of Law in Mustansiriyah, 

268. 
Public Gate, 255-9, 274-6. 
Pulpit of Harun-ar-Rashid, 155. 
Pyramid to Sphinx, distance from 

285. 

Quadrangle. See Murabba'ah. 
Quadrants, outer and inner, of 
Round City, 23-5. 

Rabf, the Chamberlain and Fief 
of, 58, 65, 67, 68, 123, 143, 197, 
322. 

Radi, Caliph, 155 ; his tomb, 194, 
195. 

Radhdh, 194. 

Rahbah. See Square. 

Rahbah JamF-al-Kasr, 272, 284. 

Rahbah Suwayd, 68. 

Rakkah, city, 71. 

Rakkah Gardens, 261. 

Rakkah of Kalwadha, 295. 

Rakkah of the Shammasfyah, 203. 

Ramalfyah, 134. 

Ram and Lion, street of, in, 133. 

Ramyah-Sahm (arrow-flight), 285. 

Rasas Kal'f (tin-plate), 257. 

Rashid -ad- Din, historian, 341. 

Rashid, Caliph. See Mansur. 

Rashid, Caliph. See Harun 

Rashidiyah, 174. 

Rawandi insurrection, 6. 

Rawdah Island, 285. 

Rawija (E. B.), 11. 



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376 



Index 



Rawlinson, Sir H. C, 9, 350, 351. 
Rayas&nah Fief, 61, 95. 
Rayhan, sweet basil or myrtle, 

271. 
Rayhaniyra Market, 229, 271-3, 

283. 
Rayhaniyin Palace, 266, 271-4, 

327. 

Rayyan Quarter, 293, 296. 

Rizf or Rhazes, physician, 62. 

Razin Canal, 52, 54, 61, 62, 91. 

Reeds for bonding walls, 20. 

Reed-weavers' Quarter, 78. 

Review Ground, 106. 

Riding House, 255. 

Riots (in A. H. 422), 182 ; (in A. H. 
520), 275; (in A. H. 601), 97. 

Road. See under Darb, Sbari', 
and Tarik ; also under Street. 

Road called ' Between the Palaces/ 
218. 

Road of Al-Ghamish, 139. 

Road of Cages, 134. 

Road of Ibn Abu 'Awn, 124. 

Road of Mahdi Canal, 199, 201. 

Road of Sa'd, 223, 225. 

Road of Skiffs, 197. 

Road of the Bridge, 199. 

Road of the Fullers, 134. 

Road of the Kahtabahs, 14a 

Road of the Painter, 77. 

Road of the Square, 197. 

Road of the Two Archways, 284-6. 

Roads in East Baghdad, 173. 

Rocks, Street of, 150, 151, 308. 

Round City of Mansur : arcades, 
25 ; bricks used, 9 ; central area, 
18, 27, 28 ; destruction of walls, 
43> 3 IO > 3*8; ditch and dyke, 
21; foundation of, 15, 303; 
gates, 17, 19, 20, 27; markets, 
25 ; plan drawn out, 17 ; posi- 
tion of, 353 ; quadrants of, 22, 
24 ; size, 18 ; squares, inner and 



outer, 23, 28 ; streets, 27 ; walls 
of, outer and inner, 19, 20, 27 ; 
water-conduits, 29. 

Rufayl Canal, 71. 

Ruha. See Mills. 

Rum and Rumtyfn, Greeks, 207. 

Rum, DAt, and Dayr (E. B.), 207- 
210, 214. 

Rumiyfn, Dar (W. B.), 149. 

Rumman Bridge, 75. 

Rusafah (East Baghdad), meaning 
'causeway,' 189; founded, 41, 
187; other places of this name, 
190 ; mosque, 188, 196, 280, 346, 
354, 356; palace, 189; quarter, 
169-75, 189-98, 305, 312-4, 334. 

Rushayd Suburb, 128. 

Sabibat for Siniyat, 149. 
Sabuktagin, the chamberlain, 235, 

236. 
Sabur Monastery, 21a 
SAbur, Palace of, 185. 
Sa'd-al-Wastf or al-Khadfm, 

226. 
Safariyah for Zafariyah, 288. 
Safaffytn, 272. 
Saffah, Caliph, 4, 5, 38 ; his tomb, 

194. 
Sahn c Atik (Mosque of Mansur), 

35. 
Sa'id, 76. 
Sa'fd-al-Harashi, Palace and 

Quadrangle, 221, 222. 
Sa Id-al-Khatfb Palace, 129. 
Saint George Monastery, 21a 
Sal, village, 62. 
Saladin, 274, 298. 
Salih, Prince, Palace of, 108. 
Salih Quadrangle, 81. 
Saljuk Mosque, 240, 282, 326, 339, 

346. 
Saljuk Palaces, 233-5, 3*3* 3*6, 

328-30. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



377 



Saljuk supremacy, period of, 302, 

322-31. 
Saltanah, D£r. See Buyid Palaces. 
Saljanah, Dar, of the Taj Palace, 

253, 262. 
Samalu Monastery, 202. 
Samarra, 13, 169, 194, 195, 246-9, 

310-4. 
Sanctuary. See Haramayn and 

Hartm. 
Sanctuary Gate, 276. 
Sanctuary of Vows, 205. 
Sanduk-as-Sa'at, 267. 
Sanjar, Sultan, 302, 331. 
Sapor Monastery, 210. 
Sapor, Palace of, 185. 
Sarat Canal, Great, 9, 14, 15, 

5°-4> 73t 91-101, 148, 149, 315, 

355. 
Sarat Canal, Little, 51, no, 134, 

141, 142, 148. 149- 
Sarat Point, Convent of, 98. 
Saray-as-Sulfan, 235. 
Sardanapalus, 9. 
Sari-as-Saka$i, 79, 99. 
Sari-ibn-al-Hu{am, 206. 
Sarjis for Sarkhis, monastery, 210. 
Sarsar Canal, 49. 
Satiety Market, 222. 
Sawad of Baghdad, 48. 
Sawfk and the Sawwaktn, 81, 82. 
School of the Orphans, 129. 
Scribes, mistake for School, q. v. 
Seleucia. See Mad&in. 
217/zaXoCof, 202. 
Sergius Monastery, 210. 
Shabib Quadrangle, 126, 129, 

I3°- 
Shabushti, 211. 
Shafi'ite law-school, 298. 
Shah ibn Sahl, 150. 
Shahar Suj, 136. 
Shahin Shah, 240. 
Shajarah, Dar, 256, 257. 



Shamilah, 180. 

Shammastyah Gate, 170-5, 198, 

199,201,203, 206,219. 
Shammastyah, meaning of, 202. 
Shammastyah Palace, 231, 232. 
Shammastyah Plain, 203. 
Shammasiyah Quarter, 109, 169- 

176, 199-216, 305, 312-4. 
Sharaf-al-Mulk Abu-Rida, 191. 
Sharafantyah, 129. 
Sharawi Fief, 59. 
Shar Suk, 136. 
SharT-al-'Akdayn, 284-6. 
ShAri'-al-A'xam, 219, 224, 225, 

255. 
Sh&ri'-al-Kayyarfn, 224. 
Shari'-al-Maydan, 197. 
Sh&rf-al-Musawwir, 77. 
Shari' Dar-ar-Raktk, 123, 124. 
Shan Karm-al-'Arsh (or Mu'ar- 

rash), 221. 
Shari' Quarter, 46, 106-8, 333. 
Shari* Sa d-al-Wasif, 223, 225. 
Sharktyah Quarter (E. B.) or 

Rusafah, 188. 
Sharkfyah Quarter (W. B.), 53, 77, 

9A9I. 
Shafibiyah or Shatfyah, Dar, 253. 
Shaft-al-Hayy, 8. 
Shawk Bridge, 53, 74-9. 
Shawt-al-Faras (horse-gallop), 

285. 
Shi'ah Shrine at Baratha, 154. 
Shi'ah Shrine at MasjidMintakah, 

90,96. 
Shf ah tendencies of Buyids, 318. 
Shiblt, his tomb, 160. 
Shuniziyah Cemetery, Greater, 79. 
Shuniziyah Cemetery, Lesser, 161. 
Shurtah, Chief of Police, 31, 106. 
Shustar, 97. 
Sieges of Baghdad, first (Amin), 

303-6 ; second (Musta'm), 31 1- 

314; third (Mansur Rashid), 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



378 



Index 



327 ; fourth (Muhammad Muk- 
tafl), 328-30; fifth (Mongol), 

340-3. 
Silk House, 137, 139. 
Silk stuffs manufactured, 137, 138. 
Sin, meaning either China or 

Date-palm, and Siniyat Bridge, 

148. 
Sind elephantmen, 256. 
Sixty, Hall of the, 235. 
Skiffs on Tigris, 184. 
Skiffs, Road of, 197. 
Slave-dealers' Gate, 68. 
Slaves' House, 123, 124. 
Soap-boilers' Quarter, 78, 91. 
Solomon, Gate of King, 20. 
Sphinx to Pyramid, distance, 285. 
Square of Khuld Palace, 200. 
Square of Kufah Gate, 58, 59. 
Square of Palace Mosque, 272, 

284. 
Square of Suwayd, 68. 
Square Palace, 259. 
Squares, outer and inner, of Round 

City, 22, 25. 
Stables of the Caliph, 106. 
Stables of the Freedmen, 59. 
State-prison of Abbasid princes, 

258. 
Straight Road, 173, 196. 
Straw Gate, 115, 123. 
Straw Gate Cemetery, 160-5. 
Straw-merchants' Bridge, 124, 126. 
Street See Darb, Sharf, and 

Tarik ; also under Road. 
Street of Abu Hanifah, 27. 
Street of 'Amr the Greek, 220. 
Street of Bricks (E. B.), 282. 
Street of Bricks (W. B.), 84. 
Street of Horse- guards, 27. 
Street of Pitch-workers, yS t 224. 
Street of the Mu'adhdhin, 27. 
Street of the Rocks, 150, 151, 308. 
Street of the Vine, 221. 



Street of the Water-carriers, 27. 
Su Capi, 349. 

Sufi Monastery of Tuthah, 79. 
Suk-ad-Dawwabb, 227. 
Suk-al- f Atikah, 90. 
Suk-al- f Atsh, 221-4. 
Suk-al-Bimaristan, 105. 
Suk-al-Ghazl, 253, 269, 278. 
Suk-al-Maristan, 105. 
Suk-al-Warrakin, 92. 
Suk-an-Nizamfyah, 299. 
Suk-ar-Rayhantyra, 229, 271-3, 
. 283. 
Suk-ar-Riyy, 222- 
Suk-as-Saghah, 218. 
Suk-as-Sarf, 272. 
Suk-as-Sultin, 282. 
Suk.ath-Thalathah(E.B.),95,i7i- 

3, 197, 228, 266, 268, 277, 283 ; 

of later Baghdad, 299. 
Suk-ath-Thalathah (W. B.), 68. 
Suk Baghdad 12, 101. 
SukGhalib,67. 
Suk Haytham, 136. 
Suk Ja'far, 200, 201. 
Suk Khalid, 201. 
Suk Nasr, 214. 
Suk of Abu-1-Ward, 60. 
Suk Tutush, 298. 
Suk Yahya, 199-201, 206. 
Sulayman, Palace of Prince, 108. 
Sulayman the Magnificent, Sultan , 

345. 
Sulayman the Tahirid, 131. 
Suljan (Polo), 244, 292. 
Sultan, Gate of the, 266, 281, 282, 

341. 
Sultan, Market of the, 282. 
Sultan, Palace of the. See Buyid 

Palaces. 
Sumayriyah (Skiffs), 184. 
Sums spent on Baghdad, 40. 
Sums spent on the Buyid Palace, 

238. 



Digitized by VjOOQ IC 



Index 



379 



Sunaya, 90. 

Surra-man-raa, 13; and see Sa- 

marra. 
Suwayd, Square of, 68. 
Suwaykah-al-Harashf, 222. 
Suwaykah Hajjaj, 226. 
Swamp, Great, of Euphrates and 

Tigris, 7. 
Sweepings, Place of, 151-3, 308. 
Syrian Gate, 17. 
Syrian Gate Canal, 54, 55. 
Syrian Gate, name of village of 

the Khalis District, 203. 
Syrian Gate, Road of, in, 122-8. 

T<*bak&t-i-N&$irt) history, 340. 
Tabak ibn Samyah, 83. 
Tabart, 303, 310-6. 
Tabbanin Bridge, 124, 126. 
Tabik Canal, 53, 69, 79, 81-4. 
Tabik Canal Quarter, 336. 
Tabiyah-az-Zawfyah, 292. 
Taby silk, 138. 

Tahir,43,93, 1 10,1 19, 144,307-10. 
Tahirid Palace (Harim), 119-21, 

327 ; tombs here, 195. 
Tahirid Trench, 51, 52, 54-6, 110- 

128, 355- 
Tahirids, no, 119, 311. 
Tai f , Caliph, 118, 162, 270, 271. 
Taj-ad-Dawlah Tutush, 298. 
Taj-al-Mulk and the Tajiyah, 288. 
Taj Palace (earlier), 39, 171, 228, 

229, 243, 250-6, 318 ; garden, 

258 ; great hall, 259 ; palace 

burnt, 260. 
Taj Palace (later), 261, 278, 327. 
Tak-al-Harrant, 90, 91, 96. 
Takat-al-'Akki, Ghijrif and Abu 

Suwayd, 130. 
Tak Gate, 178, 181, 218, 320. 
Talisman Gate, 281, 291, 348, 349. 
Tank of the Ansar, Daud, and 

Haylanah, 223. 



Tank of tin-plate in garden of the 

Caliph, 257. 
Tank, Old, 150. See Pool. 
Tanners' Yards, 156. 
Tarath, the Greek envoy, 143. 
Tarik-al-Jisr, 173, 199. 
Tarik-az-Zawarfk, 197. 
Tank Mustakim, 196. 
Tarsus, 195. 

Tafls-al-Haramayn, 159. 
Tavernier, 8, 348. 
Tha'alib, Dayr, 210. 
Thalathah, Abwab, 203. 
Thalathah, Sftk, in W. B. and in 

E. B. See Tuesday Market. 
Theophilus, Emperor, 275. 
Thirst Market, 221-4. 
Thorn Bridge, 53, 74-9. 
Thread Market, 253, 269, 278. 
Three Gates Quarter, 203. 
Threshold Gate, 274-6. 
Thurayya Palace, 176, 227, 250, 

25 1 » 3<>7- 

Tibn Gate, 115, 123, 160. 

Tibn or Broken Straw, 115. 

Tigris, course of, during Middle 
Ages, 7 ; course as regards Bagh- 
dad, 315; its waters used for 
irrigation, 48. 

Tiles, blue, 36, 79. 

Timur, 37, 166, 345. 

Tin-plate, 257. 

Toll of Tigris boats, 184. 

Tombs of the Caliphs, 193-5, 343> 
348. 

Tops, Gate of, 276. 

Traditionists' Bridge, 76. 

Treasury, 31. 

Tree of gold and silver in Palace 
of Taj, 256. 

Trench of Tahir, 51, 52, 54-6, 

110-28,355. 
Triple Divide, 228. 
Tuesday Market (W. B.), 68. 



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3 8o 



Index 



Tuesday Market and Gate (£. B.), 

95, 171-3, 197, 228, 266, 268, 

277, 283. 
Tuesday Market of later Baghdad, 

299. 
Tughril, meaning falcon, 229. 
Tughril Beg, 238, 239, 302, 322. 
Turkish body-guard, period of 

tyranny of, 302, 311- 14. 
Tus, 194 ; palace at, 147. 
Tustariytn Quarter, 94, 97, 98. 
Tuthah Suburb, 79. 
Tutush, and Tutusht Hospital 

and Market, 296-8. 

'Ubayd Allah, the Alid, 205. 
'Ubayd Allah, Palace of, 218. 
'Umarah ibn Abu-1-Khastb, 227. 
* Umarah ibn Hamzah, 117. 
Umm Habib Palace, 197. 
Umm Ja'far (Zubaydah, q. v.) Mill, 

142 ; Palace, 103. 
Underground passage to Palace of 

the Pleiades, 251. 
Upper Bridge of Boats, 107, 118, 

122-6, 177-86, 198. 
Ushnan Bridge, 75. 

Veiled Prophet of Khurasan, 

222. 
Virgins, monastery of the, 82. 

Waddah Palace (E. B.), 198. 
Waddah Palace, Mosque, and 

Quarter (W. B.), 58, 92. 
Wall Canal, 175. 
Wall of East Baghdad, earlier, 1 1 4, 

170, 172, 312; later, 183, 264, 

279-81,323,327,335. 
Wall of Palaces, 264. 
Wall of Round City, 18-26. 
Wall of West Baghdad, 114, 172, 

312. 
Wardanfyah, 126. 



Wardiyah Cemetery, 287, 288. 

Warrakin, 92. 

Warthal or Warthala, 67, 83, 91. 

Wasif the Eunuch, 180. 

Wasi(, 8, 20, 195 ; street of men 

of, 63. 
Wassaf, historian, 341. 
Water Gate, 349. 
Water-jars, 197; wharf of, 181. 
Wathik, Caliph, 66. 
Wharf. See Mashra'ah. 
Wharf of Needle-makers, 265 , 266. 
Wharf of the Myrtle-tree, 85. 
Wharf of the Nizamfyah, 299. 
White Gate, 291. 
White Palace of Chosroes, 38, 39. 
White Sheep, Turkoman dynasty, 

345. 
Wild Beast Park of Mamunt 

Palace, 244. 
Wild BeastPark of the Taj Palace, 

255-7. 
Willow Tree Gate, 265, 266. 
Wood-cutters' Wharf, 181. 
Wustanf Gate, 281, 288, 348. 

Xativa Palace, 253. 

Yahya ibn-al-Waltd, 201. 
Yahya, the Barmecide; and his 

Market, 199-201, 206, 243. 
Yakubi, 47, 303, 314-6. { 
Yakut, 335-8; mistakes in text 

of, 29, 84, no, 233, 271, 286, 

287. 
Yakutah, mistake for Banukah, 

228. 
Yasir and the Yasirtyab Bridge, 

Gate, and Quarter, 74, 76, 151, 

152, 313, 321. 
Yathrib, 1. 

Zafar and the Zafarlyah Gate and 
Suburb, 281, 283, 288-95. 



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Index 



381 



Zahir, Caliph, 163. 

Zahir Garden, 176, 219, 220, 232, 

238, 240. 
Zalzal the lute-player and the 

Zalzal Pool, 52, 61. 
Zandarud and Zandaward, 20, 

179. 
Zandaward Bridge of Boats, 179, 

296, 297. 
Zandaward Monastery, 211, 296, 

297. 
Zanj rebellion, 247. 
Zawra(W.B.), 11. 
Zayyatin Bridge, 74-6. 
Zayyat Quadrangle, 78. 



Zubaydah, wife of Harun-ar- 
Rashtd, 306-9 ; Palace of 
(Karar), 103 ; tomb of, in 
Ka?imayn, 161-5 ; false tomb, 
100, 350-2. 

Zubaydiyah Fief and Palace, 54, 
1 13-7, 124. 

Zubd Bridge, 148. 

Zuhayr ibn Muhammad, 117. 

Zuhayrfyah Quarter (of Kufah 
Gate), 59. 

Zuhayriyah Quarter (of Zubay- 
diyah), 117. 

Zurayk, 75, 76. 

Zuraykiyah Monastery, 212. 



FINIS 



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